Darbandikhan Dam overflowing following recent heavy rainfalls

SULAIMANI, Kurdistan Region — The Kurdistan Region recently experienced heavy spring rainfall, causing the Darbandikhan Dam in the south of Sulaimani province to overflow for the first time in eight years.

The 63-year-old Darbandikhan Dam has encountered its first overflow in eight years, following four consecutive years of drought and severe water shortages.

Saman Ismail, the Director of the Darbandikhan Dam, stated that the dam’s reservoir has reached its maximum capacity of three million cubic meters due to the recent heavy rainfall.

The Darbandikhan dam last reached full capacity and overflowed in 2016.

“The distinguishing factor about the current overflow of the dam compared to previous occurrences is that despite its 63-year-old age, the dam remains resilient against the floods and waves, just as it did prior to the 2017 earthquake,” said Ismail.

In 2017, a 7.3 magnitude earthquake struck the dam, causing damage to its structure.

Last month’s drone attack on the Khor Mor gas field caused a delay in the spillover of the dam. The dam’s directorate had to release water for power generation to compensate for the power shortage resulting from the attack.

The Darbandikhan Dam was constructed on the Sirwan River for the dual purposes of irrigation and power generation. Situated approximately 65 km southeast of Sulaimani province, the dam has been operational since its inauguration in 1961.

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