Application of Risk Principles within State Dam Safety Programs






Join us on July 11, from 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM Eastern for Application of Risk Principles within State Dam Safety Programs. 

The application of risk-informed decision-making to dam safety in the United States has been considered since the 1960s. However, it wasn’t until the mid-1990s that risk-informed processes and criteria were seriously applied to dam safety by both the Bureau of Reclamation and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Since that time, many other federal agencies have adopted risk-informed processes and Federal Guidelines for Dam Safety Risk Management has been published. Within state dam safety agencies, however, the adoption of risk-informed decision-making has lagged. There are many likely reasons for this delay including limited resources, difficulty in updating regulations, lack of technical training, and in some cases skepticism of engineers and regulators in adopting a new approach to dam safety. At present, most state dam safety programs still follow a prescriptive, standards-based approach for dam design criteria.   

Contrary to this trend, there have been several states (including Colorado, Washington, Montana, and New Mexico in particular) that have applied or are in the process of developing simplified risk-informed processes to dam safety. These vary from using risk information to define regulatory Inflow Design Flood criteria to facilitating potential failure mode screenings and risk assessment workshops for individual dams. Simplifications have allowed regulators and dam owners with limited resources to take advantage of risk information in making dam safety decisions. This webinar will discuss the history of risk-informed processes in the United States, provide an overview of risk-informed decision-making processes that are currently being applied within state dam safety programs, and highlight several recent risk initiatives that these states are pursuing. The perspectives of current dam safety officials from these states regarding the challenges and opportunities posed by risk analysis will also be shared.  

Learning objectives attendees will receive from this course:

  • History of the application of risk-informed processes for dam safety in the United States.
  • Perspectives of the varied obstacles that state agencies and many dam owners face that impede the widespread application of risk-informed decision-making.
  • Simplified risk-informed processes being applied by state dam safety programs in Colorado, Washington, Montana, New Mexico, and other states.
  • Challenges faced by pioneering state dam safety programs.
  • Future developments and opportunities for improvement in the application of risk-informed decision-making outside of the federal government.

View the full webinar agenda!

Registration Fees:

  • Member Rate: $99
  • Non-Member Rate: $130 - Join ASDSO before registering and save!

PDHs Available:

  • This course qualifies for 2 PDHs.

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