American Experience

Building Diversion Tunnels

Clip: Season 11 | 2m 47s

The most dangerous phase of Hoover Dam's construction was building the diversion tunnels, two on each side of the Colorado River. Blasting holes 56 feet in diameter, three-quarters of a mile through the canyon rock, the workers faced a huge engineering challenge along with strict time constraints. Chief Engineer Frank Crowe solved the problem by building a contraption called a drilling jumbo.

Aired: 01/18/99

Rating: NR

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