- Dam Safety Ad Hoc Committee Update
- September 21, 2016
- Law Firm: Nexsen Pruet LLC - Columbia Office
David Wilson from the Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) addressed the Dam Safety Ad Hoc Committee to give members an update on the current status of dams across South Carolina. He informed the Committee that DHEC has been working continuously with dam owners affected by last year’s flood. In addition to the brief update, Mr. Wilson also presented several proposals that DHEC would like to have included in a potential new bill that will be introduced at the beginning of session. These proposals include:
Annual Notification / Registration for All Regulated Dams:
- This will ensure that proper documentation is on-file regarding dams and that the information is current.
- Require dam owners to inspect their dams and fill out a pre-printed checklist that would be submitted to DHEC yearly.
- For highly vulnerable dams, DHEC wants to ensure that dam owners have emergency action plans in place to notify residents downstream if a breach is imminent.
- Currently in SC, dams that are under 25 feet in height or impound less than 50 acre feet of water are currently unregulated.
- DHEC found that numerous “Non-Regulated Dams” caused significant damage to infrastructure and property during the 2016 flood.
- DHEC proposed that this is especially needed for “High Hazard Dams” (every 5 years) and for “Significant Hazard Dams” (every 10 years).
Members of the Committee discussed the new proposals as presented by DHEC but have yet to reach a consensus. The Committee adjourned subject to the Call of the Chair and will meet again at a to be determined date in October.
The Committee will meet again at a to be determined date in October and adjourned subject to the Call of the Chair.