Dam Safety 101

November 19-20, 2020


Thursday, November 19, 2020 Central Time

8:45 - 9:00 a.m. :: Log In

9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. :: Course Timing

12:00 – 12:30 p.m. :: Lunch Break

Introduction to Dams

    1. Uses
      • Water Supply
      • Hydropower
      • Flood Control
    2. Types of Dams and Trade-offs
      • Earthen Embankment
      • Gravity Dams - Concrete & Stone Masonry
      • Arch Dams
      • Composite Structures
    3. Dam Safety Regulations & Requirements
      • State Dam Safety Regulations
      • Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Guidelines and Requirements
      • Explain Size and Hazard Classes


    1. Routine – Self Performed
    2. Safety – Performed by Independent PE
    3. What to Look for
      • Mechanics
      • Expectations
    4. Case Review

Operation and Maintenance

    1. Operation and Maintenance Plans
    2. Instrumentation Readings and Data Reduction
    3. Vegetation Management
    4. Gates and Valves
    5. Reservoir Operations
    6. Minimum Flow Releases

Emergency Action Plans

    1. Purpose and Overview
    2. What do they Include?
    3. How are they Used?
    4. Exercises and Drills

Friday,  November 20, 2020 : Central Time

8:45 – 9:00 a.m. :: Log In

900 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. :: Course Timing

Rehabilitation Design & Construction

    1. Typical Repairs/Improvements
    2. Types of Engineering Analyses
    3. Critical Issues Affecting Design
    4. Critical Issues Affecting Construction

Typical Permitting Requirements for Dam Rehabs

    1. Dam Safety
    2. Environmental
    3. Historical

Overview of FERC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

    1. Changes to the Part 12 Program
    2. Owner Dam Safety Program

Engaging a Qualified Dam Safety Consultant

    1. What Should You Look for in Your Consultant?
    2. Procurement Approach
    3. Establishing a Long-Term Relationship


Matt Taylor, Principal and Senior Vice President, GZA Associates

Matthew Taylor is a Principal and Senior Vice President at GZA.  He leads GZA's Metro Boston Dam and Levee Safety practice group.  He holds a BS in Civil Engineering from the University of Rhode Island and an MS in Civil Engineering (Geotechnical) from Northeastern University.  He is a registered professional engineer in CT, MA, ME, RI, NJ and NY and is a FERC-approved independent consultant.  His current duties include dam and levee safety inspections, seepage and stability analyses, subsurface explorations and instrumentation, preparation of EAP's, hydropower feasibility studies, and relicensing assignments, and management of the dam rehabilitation and removal projects from inspection through construction administration.  He is a past chair of the BSCES Geo-Institute, past chair of the EBC NE Dam Management Committee, and a member of ASDSO, USSD, and NHA.


We will be using Microsoft Teams to facilitate your participation in the upcoming event. You do not need to have an existing Teams account in order to participate in the broadcast – the course will play in your browser and you will have the option of using a microphone to speak with the room and ask questions, or type any questions in via the chat window and our on-site representative will relay your question to the instructor.