Agua Fria Levee Certification (AZ)
In a compressed time frame of only three months, WEST prepared Levee Certification Packages for three levees along the Agua Fria River near the City of Avondale, AZ. These three levees (called Levee 8, 16, and 18) were Provisionally Accredited Levees (PALs). The PAL status of these three levees was expiring, leading to the compressed time frame for the study. If the PAL status of these levees expired, several hundred people in the City of Avondale living behind the levees would have been put into the floodplain. This project required close coordination with the Flood Control District of Maricopa County, the City of Avondale, FEMA Region IX, and other consulting firms. Levee Certification Packages were prepared that conformed to the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Chapter 44, Section 65.10, which establishes the requirements that must be met in order for a levee to be certified and then accredited by FEMA.

WEST conducted a field reconnaissance and review of analyses, calculations, and studies for the three levees. Due to the compressed time frame, interior drainage studies were determined using modified versions of previously existing HEC-1 models. WEST also computed levee freeboard, performed scour analyses for the stability of levee toes, and mapped the floodplains of the interior drainage areas. Geotechnical engineers provided parameters essential to the stability analysis of the levees, such as depth and duration of flooding. WEST then assembled all of these analyses into three separate Levee Certification Packages. The levees were accredited by FEMA.