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In 2013, DelDOT and DNREC executed a Memorandum of Agreement to formally create a partnership to address management, maintenance, and reconstruction of the state's 42 state-owned and regulated dams. The state of Delaware adopted the Dam Safety Regulations in 2009, setting in place the Dam Safety Program. More information on the Dam Safety Program can be found here.

The joint partnership between the agencies is focused on accomplishing the following tasks:

  • Perform regular inspections of all state-owned dams
  • Coordinate funding needs for dam projects
  • Purchase rights-of-way and/or easements to ensure state access to the complete dam footprint at each dam
  • Develop, prioritize, and coordinate needed maintenance activities and repairs
  • Design and construct dam improvement projects
  • Perform hydrologic and hydraulic (H&H) analyses and develop Emergency Action Plans (EAP’s) for all state-owned dams
  • Coordinate activities before, during, and after weather related or other emergencies

Current projects include the following:

  • Hearns Pond Dam Improvements (T201207603): The first major dam reconstruction project as part of the Dam Preservation Program began construction in Spring 2016 was completed in July 2017. More information can be found on the project website. Hearns Pond Dam
  • BR 3-349 on S072, Trussum Pond Spillway Replacement (T201707601): A severe storm event in September 2016 caused the steel spillway and training walls to be undermined and compromised, so a project has been initiated to replace the spillway. More information can be found on the project website: Trussum Pond Spillway Replacement
  • Record Pond Dam Improvements (T201507605): This dam is ranked 2nd on DelDOT/DNREC's Dam Prioritization List. Improvements are planned to occur from fall of 2018 to fall 2019. More information can be found on the project website:
    Record Pond Dam Improvements
  • Hydrologic and Hydraulic Analyses: DelDOT and DNREC are currently finishing up year 2 of a 5-year project to complete H&H analyses of all 42 state-owned dams. These analyses will result in identifying the appropriate design flood and mapping the area downstream from each state-owned dam that could be impacted by a dam failure.
  • Right-of-way Acquisitions: DelDOT is currently identifying and developing plans to purchase rights-of-way and easements so that the entire footprint of all 42 state-owned dams is located within the right-of-way or proper access easements. Currently, the sideslope of many dam embankments extends beyond the state right-of-way onto private property, which makes it difficult for the state to conduct proper safety inspections and perform required maintenance activities.

(Reviewed and Updated on 08/28/2017)