Association of State Dam Safety Officials - May 2016 

National Dam Safety Awareness Day

ASDSO Challenges Members to Post About Dam Safety

When: May 31 - National Dam Safety Awareness Day

Can we share, tweet, re-tweet, like, post, mention and comment our way to trending National Dam Safety Awareness Day? This year, we are focusing not only on awareness of keeping our dams safe but keeping people safe around dams.

Use and share these links and messages on your favorite social media sites next week. 

Share links:

Use Messages such as:
National Dam Safety Awareness Day occurs each year to commemorate the South Fork Dam failure that occurred on May 31, 1889 in Johnstown, PA.
National Dam Safety Awareness Day is May 31. Learn about the history of dam failure @Dam_Safety
Dams are an important part of our #infrastructure and provide benefits including bringing water, power, flood control, recreation, and economic opportunities to communities. 

National Dam Safety Awareness Day reminds us to not play around dams. #damdangerous

More people die annually at low-head dams than from the failure of dams themselves.

Some small dams, if not marked properly, can be difficult to spot from upstream, even to experienced boaters. #dontdrownatdams

When trapped in a low-head dam, it is nearly impossible to escape the strength of the hydraulic. #dontdrownatdams 
Be Safe at Dams - 25% of dam-related deaths are rescuers. Rescuing individuals trapped in low head dam rollers is #damdangerous.

Download images, provided by ASDSO, that can be shared on Twitter or other social media outlets. If you have any issues downloading the images please contact ASDSO at 

Encourage people to search "safety around dams" on YouTube or Google. Share what you find. For instance Taking Risks Around Dams and Weirs is Dangerous.
Hashtag It:



Share press releases that focus on keeping dams safe, and the dangers surrounding dams:

Now Go Spread the Word!

Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook

View our profile on LinkedIn

View our videos on YouTube


Nominations Due June 3 for ASDSO's 2016 Awards
Note: In the previous newsletter the deadline for award nominations was specified as June 9. Please contact ASDSO if you need additional time to submit nominations for:
  • the National Dam Rehabilitation Project of the Year, for exemplary design and adherence to professional standards in dam projects of any size.
  • four Regional Awards of Merit, for contributions to dam safety on a regional level
  • the Danny McCook Medal, for achievements in geotechnical engineering
  • the Terry Hampton Medal, for achievements in hydrology/hydraulics. 
Nomination forms and additional information about the awards are available on the Awards Program page of, under "About ASDSO."


ASDSO Strategic Plan Update
With the assistance of a pool of dedicated member volunteers and ASDSO staff, the ASDSO Board of Directors is in the process of updating ASDSO's Strategic Plan, a task undertaken every five years. To help inform members about the plan and ASDSO's many activities, we are highlighting one goal per month in the newsletter. This month, our focus is Goal 3:

Increase the technical expertise of dam safety professionals and owners/operators.

The team working on this goal consists of board members Jon Garton (IA) and Art Sengupta (FL), volunteers Darren Brinker (Denver Water) and Terry Arnold (MWH Americas), and staff representative Susan Sorrell.

Within this goal, the following objectives guide yearly project development and implementation:

1. Technical training and information exchange
2. Serve as primary resource for dam safety information
3. Technical research
4. Student outreach

Log into your member portal on to read annual progress reports.

Looking Back at May
Looking Ahead to June

National Dam Safety Awareness Day - May 31

ASDSO webinar held on Strength Selection for Static Slope Stability Analysis.

ASDSO classroom course held in Omaha, NE on Inspection and Assessment of Dams.

ASDSO and the North Dakota State Water Commission presented a Dam Safety Seminar.

30th anniversary of the failure of Upriver Dam, WA. 

3  ASDSO 2016 award nominations due

40th anniversary of the failure of Teton Dam, ID

ASDSO Seminar: Inspection and Assessment of Dams, Jackson, MS

ASDSO Webinar: Cracking and Hydraulic Fracturing in Embankment Dams and Levees

14-16  DHS Dams Sector meeting, Knoxville, TN

23-24  ASDSO Board of Directors Meeting

14  Indiana Dam Owner Workshop

16  Georgia Dam owner Workshop

27-30  DHS Information Sharing Drill (Open to all - Details)

ASDSO Seminar: Stability Analysis of Embankment Dams, Austin, TX



ASDSO Training News  

Dam Safety 2016 National Conference 

Attendee registration for the Dam Safety 2016 conference in Philadelphia is NOW OPENSee the the Dam Safety 16 page of ASDSO's website for details on the technical agenda, poster presentations, specialty workshops, field trip, and networking activities.  Or download the Dam Safety 2016 Registration Packet now! Group room blocks are available at the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown hotel and the Loews Philadelphia hotel. Reserve your room prior to the cutoff date to assure availability.

Looking to exhibit or sponsor at Dam Safety 2016? Booth spaces are going quickly! Download the Dam Safety 2016 contract today to reserve your space.  

Upcoming Training Events - Attendee registration is open for the following: 

Classroom Seminar: Inspection and Assessment of Dams - June 7-9 in Jackson, MS (Only a few open seats, register today!)

Remember to Check Your Email   

Watch for ASDSO's Training & Education Newsletter,
sent on the 15th of 
each month.

State Notes
Upcoming Dam Owner Workshops in Georgia, Indiana

ASDSO and the Georgia DNR Safe Dams Program will hold a one-day Dam Safety Workshop for Owners and Operators on June 16, with a second offering on July 12. The workshop is designed to provide practical, straightforward information on topics of importance to anyone who owns or operates a dam. Details.

ASDSO and the Indiana Association for Floodplain and Stormwater Management, in conjunction with the Dam Safety Section of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, will hold a one-day Dam Information, Resources, and Training (DIRT) Conference for dam owners, operators, and local officials on June 14 in Greenwood, IN. Details.

New Jersey Emergency Preparedness Conference

During the week of May 2, 2016, the New Jersey DEP's Bureau of Dam Safety and Flood Control attended the 2016 New Jersey Emergency Preparedness Conference in Atlantic City. The Bureau uses the conference to educate New Jersey's emergency management community in the importance of dam safety. This year's conference was attended by over 1,500 state, local, and private emergency response professionals from throughout the Northeast. The Bureau provided attendees with information regarding New Jersey's Dam Safety Program along with ASDSO's "Emergency Action Planning" and "Living With Dams" booklets.  

2016 ASDSO Exhibit & Sponsorship Opportunities
Legislative Advocacy   

Support for a St. Francis Memorial

ASDSO and ASCE sent a joint letter urging Congress to vote in favor of a bill to create a National Memorial at the site of the 1928 St. Francis Dam failure. Please contact your Congressional representatives to express your support for HR 5244.
Federal Push to Create a Dam Rehab Program

On April 21, Senators Jack Reed (D-RI) and Shelly Moore Capito (R-WV) introduced S.2835, which would provide funding assistance to rehabilitate, repair or remove non-federal high hazard potential deficient dams. ASDSO worked closely with Senator Reed's staff and ASCE to help develop the legislation. 

On Thursday, April 28, the draft bill was reported out of committee along with the large Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) legislation. According to the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) website, U.S. Sens. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), chairman of the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, and Barbara Boxer (D-CA), ranking member of the Senate EPW Committee, praised broad bipartisan support for the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) of 2016 at the Senate EPW markup today. The legislation was reported out of the committee by a vote of 19 to 1

Co-sponsors now include Senators Graham (SC), Moore (WV), Gillibrand (NY), Hirono (HI), Whitehouse (RI), and Wicker (MS). Thanks go to the Mississippi Dam Safety Division for writing a letter of support to Senator Wicker prior to his sponsorship.

Bill summary
Bill outline

There is no movement to introduce a similar bill on the House side.

Call to Action: ASDSO members should contact their Senators to recommend support for this important program. Please see ASDSO Support for Dam Rehab Bill for more information and talking points.


The following positions are posted in the ASDSO Career Center:

Deputy Chief Dam Safety
New York City Environmental Protection (NYCDEP), Shokan, NY
Post Date: Thursday, May 19, 2016
Close Date: Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Civil Engineer, Dam and Reservoir Safety Program
Missouri Geological Survey, Missouri Department of Natural Resources, Rolla, Missouri
Post Date: Wednesday, May 18, 2016
Close Date: Thursday, June 2, 2016
Engineering Project Manager
Rye Development, Boston
Post Date: Thursday, May 12, 2016
Close Date: Tuesday, July 12, 2016
Project Engineer
Rye Development, Boston
Post Date: Thursday, May 12, 2016
Close Date: Tuesday, July 12, 2016
Dam Inspector & Maintenance Coordinator
Arkansas Natural Resources Commission, Little Rock, AR
Post Date: Wednesday, April 20, 2016
Close Date:  Until filled
Senior Geotechnical Manager
GEI Consultants, Carlsbad, CA
Post Date: Monday, March 7, 2016
Close Date: Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Is your company looking for an intern or entry-level employee? Several students have posted their resumes in the ASDSO Career Center and would love you hear from you!

Visit the ASDSO Career Center to view student resumes, learn more about the positions listed above, or post career and internship opportunities.   

Reminder: FEMA Hazard Mitigation Assistance Grant Applications Due June 15

FEMA's Pre-Disaster Mitigation and Flood Mitigation Assistance grant programs help state, local, tribal and territorial governments reduce adverse impacts of natural disasters on communities. The Notice of Funding Opportunities at contains the key program priorities and application requirements for each program. Applications are due by 3:00 p.m. EDT on June 15, 2016.  


Research & Publications

Western Dam Engineering Technical Note

The latest issue of the Technical Note includes the following articles, by Taylor Rawlinson, Aaron Neff, Bob Waddell, Dan Johnson, and Jennifer Williams:

(1) Dam Engineering in the Palm of Your Hand - Mobile Apps for the Modern Day Engineer 
(2) You Down with CIPP [cured-in-place pipe]? - Yeah! You know me!  
(3) Is Your Embankment Dam under Pressure - Underseepage Impacts

ASCE "Failure to Act" Report

The American Society of Civil Engineers has released a new report entitled Failure to Act: Closing the Infrastructure Investment Gap for America's Economic Future. The report notes that the nation's inability to invest adequately in repairs or upgrades to deteriorating infrastructure is hampering economic growth. This "Failure to Act" report - one in a series - estimates that continued underinvestment in infrastructure will cost each U.S. family $3,400 a year over the next decade. Ten infrastructure areas considered: aviation, bridges, drinking water, electricity, inland waterways, ports, commuter rail, roads, transit, and wastewater.

News Roundup

Instructors: John France and Christina Winckler, AECOM

This webinar provides practical guidance on the selection of soil shear strength parameters for static slope stability analysis. Topics covered include:  stress-strain behaviors of cohesionless and cohesive soils and their relationships to strength selection; drained and undrained strengths and their application in stability analysis; the differences between effective stress and total stress analysis methods; loading cases for stability analysis and appropriate strength selection for each case; methods for selection of strength parameters from field and laboratory data.

Member Price: $60.00 

CD contains materials from the ASDSO technical seminar presented March 29-31, 2016 in Baltimore, MD by Randy Bass, James Crowder, and John Harrison. 

The course provided a thorough overview of the fundamentals of specifying the fresh and hardened properties of concrete mixes; review of applicable codes for concrete hydraulic structures; design philosophy and methodology of reinforced concrete hydraulic structures; and issues associated with the construction process. Instructors provided actual design examples of frequently used hydraulic structures utilizing current design codes and guidelines for reducing cracking, limiting deflections, increasing durability, and decreasing permeability. 

Member Price: $72 
For additional dam safety resources, search 

Focus on Security     

Registration Open for the June Dams Sector Information Sharing DrillInfoShare
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Dams Sector Specific Agency (SSA) will conduct this year's Dams Sector Information Sharing Drill from Monday, June 27th through Wednesday, June 29th, 2016. A "lessons-learned" session will be held on Thursday, June 30th.

As successfully demonstrated by previous drills in 2012, 2013, and 2014, this effort provides sector stakeholders an opportunity to evaluate their capabilities of receiving and sharing physical security and cybersecurity-related information in response to relevant threats and events. 

Register today so you won't miss the opportunity to participate.

During the drill, essential materials will be posted on the Homeland Security Information Network-Critical Infrastructure (HSIN-CI) Dams Portal. For this reason, it is critical that participants have access to the Portal. DHS recommends that participants register for the drill as soon as possible (no later than June 10) and then verify that they have access to their HSIN-CI Dams Portal accounts.

Anyone with an expired HSIN-CI account will need to re-apply by contacting the HSIN Help desk at: or calling (866) 430-0162.

If you are new to the HSIN-CI Dams Sector Community and have never requested HSIN-CI Dams Portal access, please complete the attached form and submit it to Incomplete submittals may lead to delays in processing, so please provide information for every data field.

For more information, please contact the Dams SSA at: 

Postponed: Dam Security and Protection Technical Seminar, May 24-25, Providence, RI

The DHS Dams Sector has postponed this training. ASDSO will provide information on rescheduling as it becomes available. 

Cybersecurity for Dams

The Department of Homeland Security Dams Sector recently approved the following documents: 

The Dams Sector Cybersecurity Framework Implementation Guidance enables an organization - regardless of its size, degree of risk, or cybersecurity sophistication - to apply the principles and effective practices of cyber risk management to improve the security and resilience of its critical infrastructure. It recommends an approach that enables organizations to prioritize their cybersecurity decisions based on individual business needs without additional regulatory requirements.

The Dams Sector Cybersecurity Program Guidance outlines various strategies and methods to develop or improve a basic cybersecurity program, enabling owners and operators to select cybersecurity activities and measures appropriate to their cyber assets and risk profiles. Its purpose is to promote the protection of Industrial Control Systems (ICS) and thereby improve public safety and public confidence. These guidelines are designed to assist Dams Sector owners and operators of any size in: Characterizing their current and target cybersecurity postures; identifying gaps in their existing cybersecurity risk management efforts; recognizing that existing Sector tools, standards, and guidelines may support cyber risk management; effectively demonstrating and communicating their risk management approaches to both internal and external stakeholders; and assisting in the implementation of relevant Cybersecurity Framework elements. 

A recent International Water Power and Dam Construction article entitled The Digital Battlefield explains why the world's dams are now primary targets for cyber attack.

Joint Council Cyber Webinar Series

A joint Council Cyber Webinar Series sponsored by the Regional Consortium and State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial Government coordinating councils, in conjunction with the DHS Office of Infrastructure Protection, will be held from 3:00 to 4:00 PM EDT on June 2. On the agenda: 

"Federal Cyber Resources and How to Tap Into Them," presented by Howard Tsai

"Building the CyberMaryland Initiative," presented by David Powell

Details and registration information 

Member News

Missouri Chief Engineer Dam Safety and State Representative Glenn Lloyd will be retiring soon. The new Chief Engineer and State Representative for Missouri will be Ryan Stack, who has been with the state dam safety program for more than six years.

Welcome New Members!

The following individuals joined ASDSO in May:

Michelle L. Barnes, NV Division of Water Resources, Carson City, NV
Shane Boudreaux, LA Department of Transportation & Development, Baton Rouge, LA
John N. Ernst, County of Ocean, Toms River, NJ
Angelino Ferreira, Department of Homeland Security, Arlington, VA
Ellie Hashem, Ph.D., P.E., AZ Department of Water Resources, Phoenix, AZ
Chad Holton, Trinity River Authority, Livingston, TX
Gokhan Inci, HDR Engineering, Inc., Denver, CO
Brian Mager, ND State Water Commission, Bismarck, ND
Michael Mortensen, Pacificorp Electric Operations, Salt Lake City, UT
Shailesh Namekar, Yogi Kwong Engineers LLC, Honolulu, HI
Mark Parsons, Brazos River Authority, Graford, TX
Gwynn Riley, Marion Hill Associates, Inc., New Brighton, PA
Bill Staggs, Hot Springs Village POA, Hot Springs Village, AR
Dustin Ward, B & F Engineering, Inc., Hot Springs National Park, AR 

News & Events of Other Organizations 
The Deep Foundations Institute has announced keynote speakers for the International Conference on Deep Foundations, Seepage Control and Remediation, Oct. 12-16, New York, NY:
  • Conference Keynote Speaker: Satoru Ueda, lead dam specialist of the World Bank, will discuss the World Bank's strategy, policy, challenges and lessons learned as well as the need for technological development with reference to several World Bank funded projects and programs. 
  • Seepage Control and Remediation Track Keynote Speaker: James C. Dalton, P.E., chief of the USACE Engineering and Construction Division, will speak about remediation and rehabilitation efforts at Mosul Dam, in Iraq. 
  • Deep Foundations Track Keynote Speaker: George J. Pierson, president of The Pierson Advisory Group and former president and CEO of Parsons Brinckerhoff, will present "A Career Built upon the Foundation of Risk Management, Mitigation and Resolution." 


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Association of State Dam Safety Officials
239 South Limestone St.
 Lexington, Kentucky 40508
This newsletter is written and distributed by the Association of State Dam Safety Officials, 239 S. Limestone St., Lexington, KY 40508.  Contact ASDSO by phone (859.550.2788; toll-free: 855.228.9732), fax (859.550.2795), or email (

ASDSO 2015-2016 Board of Directors: Jim Pawloski, PE (President) - Michigan;  Dusty Myers, PE (President-Elect) - Mississippi; Jon Garton, PE (Treasurer) - Iowa; Roger Adams, PE (Secretary) - Pennsylvania; Tom Woosley, PE (Past President) - Georgia; Charlie Cobb, PE - Alaska; Shane Cook, PE - North Carolina; Bill McCormick, PE - Colorado; Art Sengupta, PE - Florida; Paul Simon, PE - Missouri; Charles Thompson, PE - New Mexico; Hal Van Aller, PE - Maryland.  Advisory Committee Representatives: Eric Ditchey, PE; Paul Schweiger, PE
Association of State Dam Safety Officials, 239 South Limestone, Lexington, KY 40508
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