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Oversight Agencies

Oversight of the design and construction of the recovery of the Oroville spillway structures is being conducted by several entities with specialized dam design and construction expertise. Both the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and California Division of Safety of Dams (DSOD) must approve all designs and will oversee and approve construction. During the emergency response, DSOD, FERC and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) worked closely with DWR as critical decisions were being made.


Any water power project and the construction, operation, maintenance, use, repair, or modification of any project works are subject to the inspection and the supervision of the Regional Engineer or any other authorized Commission representative. Since Oroville Dam has a hydroelectric facility, it falls under the regulation of FERC’s dam safety program. FERC staff review and comment on all aspects of the recovery work of the Oroville spillways.

View FERC documents related to the Oroville spillway incident.


All dams within the jurisdiction of the state are subject to state supervision by the DSOD. DSOD reviews all aspects of the design and makes independent evaluations to ensure any alterations or repairs to dams result in a safe dam. Therefore, the recovery of the Oroville spillways is being reviewed and approved by DSOD.


USACE has a robust national dam safety program under which it operates and maintains approximately 700 dams nationwide and in Puerto Rico. USACE carries out its dam safety program to ensure projects deliver their intended benefits while reducing risks to the public. Through implementation of its dam safety program, USACE has built expertise and technical competencies across a broad range of disciplines for all aspects of dam safety projects. Given their strong technical capabilities and expertise, USACE and DWR have entered into an agreement which allows USACE to support recovery planning for the Oroville spillway structures. USACE engineers and geologists have provided advice and support of spillway operations, short-term stabilization measures, direct support of drilling rigs for geology investigations, and expert review and advice on all design aspects.