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News Advisory
RI Department of Environmental Management
235 Promenade St., Providence, RI 02908
(401) 222-2771 TDD/(401) 222-4462


For Release:

August 22, 2000

Media Contact:

Sally Spadaro 222-4700 ext. 2426

NATIONAL DAM SAFETY CONFERENCE TO BE HOSTED BY DEM

PROVIDENCE - The Association of State Dam Safety Officials will hold its Dam Safety 2000 conference at the Westin Hotel and the Rhode Island Convention Center in Providence from September 27 through September 30. The Department of Environmental Management will host this year's conference.

Since its formation in 1984, the Association of State Dam Safety Officials has served as the leading professional organization for individuals committed to ensuring the safety of dams in the United States. The annual conference draws over 600 professionals from all over the United States and several foreign countries. Participants include: dam safety regulators, consulting engineers, suppliers, contractors and dam owners and operators. Technical sessions will be presented by a comprehensive lineup of experts in areas such as dam rehabilitation, geotechnical issues, hydrology and hydraulics, seismic analysis and risk management.

The Dam Safety 2000 conference coincides with a new state initiative to ensure the safety of all private and state owned dams in Rhode Island. In May 2000, Governor Lincoln Almond

created the Dam Safety and Maintenance Task Force to develop recommendations to ensure that the 510 dams across the state are effectively maintained. DEM Director Jan Reitsma and Major General Reginald Centracchio, Adjutant General for Rhode Island, serve as the co-chairs of this task force.

The task force is comprised of dam owners, representatives of dam associations, and municipal, state, and federal officials. The aim of the task force is to establish a comprehensive method of monitoring, maintenance, and repairs that will ensure safety and upkeep of dams throughout Rhode Island. The recommendations of this group will be presented to Governor Almond and the General Assembly by the end of this year.

Highlights of the Dam Safety 2000 conference include an update on the status of the new National Dam Safety Program, technical case studies in dam rehabilitation, a large dam safety exhibit and show, and a special workshop for dam owner/operators. A field trip to the Gainer Dam at the Scituate Reservoir in Scituate, the Stillwater Dam in Smithfield, and the Olney Pond Dam at Lincoln Woods in Lincoln is also planned. In addition, the annual Regional Awards of Merit and the National Rehabilitation Project of the Year Award will be presented.

Details on the conference agenda, registration, and exhibit/sponsorship opportunities are available from ASDSO by contacting Susan A. Sorrell at 859-257-5146 or, via e-mail, at sasorrell@damsafety.org. Although registration is available until the conference itself, registration fees are lower if you register before August 25.

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