ASDSO Conferences and Seminars


November 17-19, 2015 at the Medallion Conference Center, 7309 Garners Ferry Road, Columbia, South Carolina, 29209.

View Seminar Agenda or Instructor Bios.

This course is currently full and registration is CLOSED.  
This course will be taught again in Nebraska May 25-27, 2015 (Details coming soon).

This Technical Seminar is approved for credit to satisfy mandatory continuing education requirements for Professional Engineers licensed in New York.  The course is classified as CE Training and participants who complete the course and the assessment quizzes will receive a certificate for up to 19 professional development hours (PDHs). 

Course Objectives: This seminar provides comprehensive instruction in inspection and evaluation techniques for dams.  The principles, concepts and procedures taught will be readily adaptable to any organization conducting dam inspections and evaluating their compliance with current design standards.  The target audience is state and federal dam owners/regulators, local and private dam owners/operators, consulting engineers and personnel responsible for the operation and maintenance of dams.  Participants learn about a variety of dam types and their appurtenances, the function of typical dam features, and common dam failure modes and the conditions that can led to these failure modes.  Actual dam failure cases will be presented.  Public safety, security, and liability will also be discussed along with approaches to responding to dam incidents.

Acceptable standards for the condition and operation and maintenance of dams will be presented.   The importance of reviewing records, conducting visual examinations, and monitoring instrumentation will be emphasized.  Participants will be introduced to specialized inspection techniques, including confined space entry, conduit inspections using remotely operated vehicles (ROVs), and underwater diving inspection.  The seminar includes a visit to two local dams to practice inspection techniques, observe a conduit inspection using an ROV, observe the proper operation of water control gates, and collect dam instrumentation readings. The importance of identifying hazard creep as part of the inspection process will also be discussed.

There are no specific education or experience prerequisites for this course, although some knowledge/experience in dam safety would be beneficial.

Course Materials: Course materials will be produced on DVD. The Workshop DVD will include copies of the presentation slides, plus several helpful references including:

FEMA Technical Manuals, including:
•         Impacts of Animals on Earthen Dams
•         Impacts of Plants on Earthen Dams
•         Conduits Through Embankment Dams
•         Best Practices
•         Filters for Embankment Dams
•         FEMA P-919 – Summary of Existing Guidelines for Hydrologic Safety of Dams;
•         plus a number of internet URLs for sites where additional information can be                        found.

What to Bring: Attendees interested in participating in the visit to local dams to practice inspection techniques should bring appropriate outdoor apparel.  Personal protection equipment (hard hat, steel toed boots, etc) is not required for this field tour.

Professional Development Hours: This technical seminar contains up to 24 hours of classroom instruction (This includes the optional evening session). Forms for the documentation of PDH credits will be provided to all registered attendees.

Registration Fees: Fees prior to November 4 are $850 for ASDSO members and $950 for non-members. A late fee of $50 will be applied for registrations received after November 3.  Registration fees include all course materials, daily refreshment breaks, and field trip transportation.

Cancellation & Refund Policy: Cancellations received in writing by Tuesday, November 10 will receive a refund. All refunds are subject to a $75 processing fee. After November 10, registration fees are no longer refundable.

Provision of Services for Sensory Impaired Attendees: ASDSO will provide services to sensory impaired persons attending the seminar if requested at least five days prior to the date of the seminar. Please contact Susan Sorrell at ASDSO (859) 550-2788 for more information.

Attendee Parking: Free parking is available for seminar attendees at the Medallion Conference Center.

Overnight Accommodations: No ASDSO group room blocks have been reserved, however, the following hotels are within close proximity to the seminar location and may offer government per diems or other discounted rates.

  • Holiday Inn Express and Suites
  • LaQuinta Inn
  • Comfort Inn
  • Hampton Inn
  • Days Inn

Confirmation and Attendee Profile: A registration confirmation message will be sent via email. You will also receive a link to a short on-line survey prior to the seminar date. Please take a moment to complete the survey, as your participation will help us efficiently tailor the content to the needs of the attendees.

Questions: Call Jennifer Burns, ASDSO, at (859) 550-2788 or email

Association of State Dam Safety Officials, 239 S. Limestone, Lexington, KY 40508 | 859/550-2788 |

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