BOR Eyes 358 Aging Dams

Published online: Nov 01, 1999
United States' Bureau of Reclamation is eyeing 358 dams and dikes which are considered to have high or significant hazards for facility reviews, monitoring and engineering analyses.

Announced in a Department of Interior bulletin released in late October, the BOR has charge of 457 dams and dikes. Those at risk of failure based on age and design will be prioritized and be included in the BOR's Dam Safety Program.

Risk reductions will be instituted in some instances through non-structural actions such as reservoir restrictions. In addition, the review will analyze security and external factors which could jeopardize the structures such as natural events.

The Bureau noted that 50 percent of the dams were built between 1900 and 1950. Only 10 percent have been built under current design and construction practices.