Dam Safety Program

High water flows over North Fork Dam near Auburn, California, January 11, 2017. 

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sacramento District owns and operates 17 dams and reservoirs in California's Central Valley, which provide multiple benefits including flood risk management, water storage, hydropower, fish and wildlife conservation, and recreation.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers dams avoid $236 billion in direct damages and preserve $25 billion a year in economic benefits.

The Corps owns 694 dams nationwide and in Puerto Rico, 95 percent of which are more than 30 years old and 52 percent have reached or exceeded the 50-year service lives for which they were designed. This does not mean they will fail after 50 years, but they may require additional maintenance and modifications to ensure they meet current safety standards and continue to provide multiple benefits for decades to come.

The Corps continually evaluates the condition and safety of its dams through the dam safety program. Extensive study of each dam identifies potential risks and their severity, allowing us to prioritize - using the dam safety action classification system - which dams are in the most urgent need of modernization using limited federal funding.

Sacramento District Dams in California


Safety Classifications Infographic
(click to enlarge) 

  Flood Releases Infographic
(click to enlarge)