Dam Emergency Action Planning

Hazard Mitigation
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Contact Information

​​Dam Data Requests

To request dam inundation data, please submit a Public Records Act request. Please contact Robert C. Rodriguez, Attorney, at (916) 845-8968​, or Amanda DeAlba, Attorney, at (916) 845-8972, or send an email to: PRA@caloes.ca.gov.

EAP Information

For other information on dam emergency action planning, please contact the Dam Emergency Action Planning Division at eap@caloes.ca.gov.

Inundation Mapping Information

For information on dam inundation mapping, please refer to the DSOD website.

​For Dam Stakeholders:

Message from the Division of Dam Safety, Department of Water Resources

Senate Bill 92 added Sections 6160 and 6161 to the Water Code that became effective on June 27, 2017, requiring owners of State regulated dams, except those classified as low hazard, to prepare emergency action plans (EAPs) containing inundation map(s) for emergency preparedness. On October 19, 2017, emergency regulations were adopted to provide standards for preparing and submitting maps to the Division of Safety of Dams (DSOD) for their review and approval. These regulations are available here.

Dam owners must submit EAPs to the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) for approval by deadlines that are based on the dam’s downstream hazard classification. Dam owners received letters in July identifying their dam’s hazard classification and the statutory deadlines for EAPs as shown below:

· Extremely high hazard dams: January 1, 2018
· High hazard dams: January 1, 2019
· Significant hazard dams: January 1, 2021

It is important to note that inundation maps must first be submitted to DSOD for review and approval, and only approved inundation maps should be contained within EAPs that are submitted to Cal OES for their approval.

Upon approval of the EAP by Cal OES, dam owners are responsible for ensuring that the approved EAP is disseminated to appropriate public safety and emergency management agencies, which includes DSOD. Thank you for your cooperation.

If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact DSOD at MapRegs@water.ca.gov.



Are there any other statutory requirements for jurisdictional dam owners?Are there any other statutory requirements for jurisdictional dam owners?<p>​Yes. At least once annually, the dam owner shall conduct an EAP notification or tabletop exercise with local public safety agencies.<br> <br>Please see the <a href="https://www.water.ca.gov/Programs/All-Programs/Division-of-Safety-of-Dams" target="_blank">DSOD webpage</a> for statutory requirements related to inundation mapping.</p>
How often is a dam owner required to maintain, update, and revise an EAP?How often is a dam owner required to maintain, update, and revise an EAP?<p>​Dam owners shall update their EAP, including inundation map(s), at least every ten (10) years. Updates are also required when there is:<br>· a significant modification to the dam or a critical appurtenant structure, as determined by DSOD;<br>· a significant change to downstream development that involves people and property.</p>
How should I develop my EAP?How should I develop my EAP?<p>​California statute requires that EAPs be developed in accordance with FEMA’s Federal Guidelines for Dam Safety: Emergency Action Planning for Dams. Government Code Section 8589.5 also requires that the EAP must include at a minimum:<br>· Notification flowcharts and contact information<br>· The response process<br>· The roles and responsibilities of the dam owner and impacted jurisdictions following an incident involving the dam<br>· Preparedness activities and exercise schedules<br>· Inundation maps approved by DWR<br>· Any additional information that may impact life or property<br> <br>As needed, Cal OES will develop additional tools and information to aid in the EAP process. <br> <br>California law also requires that EAPs be developed in consultation with any local public safety agency that may be impacted by an incident involving the dam, to the extent a local agency wishes to consult. This process/outreach needs to be documented within the EAP.</p>
I currently have an EAP. Can that be re-submitted for approval under the new requirements?I currently have an EAP. Can that be re-submitted for approval under the new requirements?<p>​If a dam owner has an existing EAP as of March 1, 2017, the owner can submit the inundation map within that plan to DSOD for approval. DSOD will review and may approve the inundation map if it is deemed sufficient. If DSOD approves the map, the dam owner may submit the EAP to Cal OES for review. </p>
What are dam hazard classifications?What are dam hazard classifications?<p>​The downstream hazard classifications are based solely on potential downstream impacts to life and property should the dam fail when operating with a full reservoir. These classifications are not related to the condition of the dam or its appurtenant structures. The definitions for downstream hazard classifications are based on the Federal Guidelines for Inundation Mapping of Flood Risks Associated with Dam Incidents and Failures (FEMA P-946, July 2013). FEMA categorizes the downstream hazard potential into three categories in increasing severity: Low, Significant, and High. DSOD adds a fourth category of “Extremely High” to identify dams that may impact highly populated areas or critical infrastructure, or have short evacuation warning times.</p>
What are the requirements if my dam is co-regulated by FERC?What are the requirements if my dam is co-regulated by FERC?<p>​An owner of a dam that is jointly regulated by the state and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) shall prepare an EAP in accordance with FERC guidelines.</p>
What is an EAP and why is it important?What is an EAP and why is it important?<p>​An EAP is a written document that identifies potential emergency conditions at a dam and specifies preplanned actions to help minimize property damage and loss of life should those conditions occur.<br> <br>EAPs contain procedures and information that instruct dam owners to issue early warning and notification messages to downstream emergency management authorities. The document must also contain inundation map(s) demonstrating critical areas for evacuation-related actions. Additionally, EAPs:<br> <br>· Provide assistance and guidance to local jurisdictions on their emergency planning for dam failure events; and<br>· Aid local, state, and federal agencies with activities to ensure effective dam incident emergency response procedures and planning. </p>
When does the 60 day review period begin?When does the 60 day review period begin?<p>​The 60 day review period begins when the Cal OES Dam Emergency Action Planning Division receives the EAP with the approved inundation map included. If an EAP is submitted to<br> Cal OES without an approved inundation map, the review period will begin when the Dam Emergency Action Planning Division receives the letter from DSOD that the applicable inundation map has been approved. </p>
When is my EAP due?When is my EAP due?<p>​Deadlines for dam EAP submissions are:<br>· On or before January 1, 2018, if the hazard classification is extremely high.<br>· On or before January 1, 2019, if the hazard classification is high.<br>· On or before January 1, 2021, if the hazard classification is significant.</p>
Where should I submit my EAP?Where should I submit my EAP?<p>​Per legislation, the development of an EAP should be based on and include an inundation map approved by DSOD. After development, dam owners must submit the EAP to both Cal OES and DSOD. Please submit the Cal OES copy of the EAP to the Dam Emergency Planning Division, to:<br>  <br>Jose Lara, Chief<br>Dam Emergency Action Planning Division<br>3650 Schriever Avenue<br>Mather, CA 95655<br> <br>At this time, Cal OES requests that dam owners submit one paper copy of the EAP and one digital copy (email, cd, or thumb drive).</p>
Who is required to have an EAP?Who is required to have an EAP?<p>​Sections 6160 and 6161 of the California Water Code and Government Code Section 8589.5 require owners of state regulated dams to submit EAPs to Cal OES and the Department of Water Resources (DWR) Division of Safety of Dams (DSOD), unless the dam has been classified as low hazard by DSOD.</p>

​Owner Education Workshop: Inundation Maps and EAPs

Cal OES and DSOD hosted an Owner Education Workshop on January 30, 2018 to discuss new requirements for inundation maps and EAPs. The Workshop recording is below:



2016 Oroville Dam Inundation Map

Most dam owners are required to prepare inundation maps as part of the dam permitting process. These maps are prepared by civil engineers on behalf of dam owners, as required under California law. Inundation maps are developed from the best available information using reasonable assumptions and standardized methods. The maps are an approximation of the maximum water flow resulting from a complete dam failure. The maps portray a catastrophic failure of the dam, as opposed to the failure a critical appurtenant structure, such as a spillway. This map represents a worst-case scenario contemplating a complete failure of the Oroville Dam. Depending upon actual circumstances, appropriate alert and evacuation areas could be more or less extensive than the simulated zones shown on the maps.

Inundation Map for Oroville Dam 2016.pdf 




Dam Division Information Sheethttp://www.caloes.ca.gov/HazardMitigationSite/Documents/Dam Division Information Sheet - 1.18.18.docxDam Division Information SheetDam Emergency Action Planning1/18/2018 6:53:28 PM
EAP Elementshttp://www.caloes.ca.gov/HazardMitigationSite/Documents/EAP Elements.pdfEAP ElementsDam Emergency Action Planning2/12/2018 5:32:24 PM
EAP Review Processhttp://www.caloes.ca.gov/HazardMitigationSite/Documents/EAP Review Process.pdfEAP Review ProcessDam Emergency Action Planning2/12/2018 5:33:02 PM
Sample EAPhttp://www.caloes.ca.gov/HazardMitigationSite/Documents/Sample EAP.docxSample EAPSample EAPDam Emergency Action Planning11/9/2017 11:29:53 PM
Inundation Map for Oroville Dam 2016http://www.caloes.ca.gov/HazardMitigationSite/Documents/Inundation Map for Oroville Dam 2016.pdfInundation Map for Oroville Dam 2016Dam Safety11/28/2017 4:55:48 PM


Federal Guidelines for Dam Safety: Emergency Action Planning for Dams

Water Code §6160, 6161, 6162

Government Code §8589.5


On January 30, 2018, DWR and Cal OES hosted an Owner Education Workshop about Inundation Maps and EAPs. You can find the workshop recording at https://youtu.be/_VYTeFcNIIs.

​Whether Drought or Storms, Folsom Dam is a Multi-Purpose Facility



The Cal OES Dam Inundation Mapping & Emergency Procedure (DIMEP) Program was established by Government Code §8589.5 in 1972 following a near failure of the Lower San Fernando Dam during the Sylmar Earthquake. The program provided assistance and guidance to local jurisdictions on emergency planning for dam failure events by:
· Collecting and reviewing dam failure inundation maps
· Evaluating waivers from the inundation mapping requirements

The DIMEP Program coordinated with the California Department of Water Resources (DWR), Division of Safety of Dams (DSOD) and other state and federal agencies in activities to assure effective dam incident emergency response procedures and planning.

The DIMEP Program was also the designated repository of the official dam failure inundation maps used in California’s Natural Hazard Disclosure statement.

SB 92 superseded this previous legislation and removed our authority to review and approve dam inundation maps, giving that responsibility to DSOD.



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