Emergency Action Plan

by Patricia Hagan-Chagnon, Bureau of Reclamation, Denver, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Hydraulic Engineering


Although most dam owners have a high level of confidence in the structures they own and are certain their dams will not fail, the Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) included, history has shown that on occasion dams do fail and that often these failures cause extensive property damage and loss of life. Reclamation prepares for this possibility by developing Emergency Action Plans (EAP). An EAP plan is a plan developed that identifies potential emergency situations or unusual occurrences at a dam and details procedures to minimize property damage and loss of life downstream. Two main objectives for developing and implementing EAP's are: (1) to provide adequate time for the dam owner to take quick and prudent action to prevent or contain the uncontrolled release of stored water, and (2) to prepare the dam operator to take actions necessary to provide for a timely notification to local authorities to warn and evacuate the population at risk downstream from the dam.

Subject Headings: Dam failures | Emergency management | Public health and safety | Bureau of Reclamation | Failure analysis | Water reclamation | Owners | Public policy

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