The Grant County PUD is looking at bids to analyze a critical part of the Wanapum Dam.

A recent inspection by independent consultants determined if there was erosion present inside the part known as the embankment, it could be cause potential failure.

The embankment is a critical piece that connects  the concrete portion of the dam to the shoreline.

Grant PUD commissioners will select one of four bids for a 10-year $15 million contract to analyze the embankment piece.

The dam was built in the early1960s with technology that was state of the art at the time,

The PUD says it's following federal procedures and requirements for operations at the dam.

Commissioners are scheduled to vote on a contract to make the analysis at the dam at their Aug. 23 meeting at Grant PUD's Ephrata Headquarters.

A release from the PUD says work is already underway downriver to build a concrete wall just inland and parallel to the dam's existing earthen embankment on the Yakima County side of Priest Rapids Dam.

The $54 million project is also a federal dam-safety requirement to ensure seismic stability.

There's also a requirement for seismic stability with fixes being made at the Wanapum Dam.

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