DEEP: Dams

Connecticut Dam Safety Program

{Collins Company Dam on the Farmington River in Canton}
Collins Company Dam, Canton

State-Owned Dams:  For information on dams owned by the State of Connecticut and ongoing project updates. All other dam owners see material below.



Emergency Action Plans (EAP):

Emergency Action Plans for Class C High Hazard dams were due on February 3, 2017.
Emergency Action Plans for Class B Significant Hazard Dams were due by August 3, 2017. 

Owners of Class C High Hazard dams who have not yet submitted an updated EAP that meets the February 3, 2106 Regulation requirements may be subject to further enforcement measures which may include civil penalties allowable under Section 22a-6b of the Connecticut General Statutes and Section 22a-6b-1 of the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies.
Select the following links for a form to use to send DEEP Dam Safety a statement of your situation and proposed schedule of compliance with the EAP requirements:

Select the following links for a template to use for preparing an EAP, a checklist to use to ensure the EAP will conform to the Dam Safety Regulation, answered questions, and some guidance for dam breach inundation map preparation.

 EAP Template (July 2017) (Word Form)
 EAP Checklist (December 2016) (pdf)
 Questions and Answers about EAP Preparation (July 2017) (PDF)
Municipal Emergency Notification Contact Form (Word Form; PDF )
  {guide for emergency preparedness and levees}

Emergency Preparedness Guidelines for Levees - Document provides guidance about high water events and how to develop an emergency preparedness plan.


Dam Safety Regulation:  The Dam Safety regulation was most recently revised with an effective date of February 3, 2016. The two sections of the dam safety regulation are available from the Secretary of the State Connecticut eRegulations System by selecting the following links:

22a-409: Definitions, Registration, Classification, Inspections

22a-411: Definitions, Requirements for Emergency Action Plans


Dam Safety Statute:  The Dam Safety Statute was last substantially revised by Public Act 2013-197 which authorized changes regarding Emergency Action Plans and inspection requirements.

Dam Safety Statute Section 22a-401


Dam Safety Program - Background: 

Dams in Connecticut: Their History, Use and Regulation

Dam Inspections:

Note to dam owners: On January 14, 2019, Notices of Required Inspection (NORI) were sent to owners of high, significant, and some moderate hazard class dams notifying them that their dam(s) are due for regulatory inspection during the 2019 calendar year. 
If you have received a notice from previous years and have not yet initiated the inspection, you should contact the Dam Safety Program as soon as possible to discuss the matter.  You can use the Statement form available below to inform DEEP of your situation and proposed schedule of compliance with the inspection requirements.
If your dam has not been inspected recently or at the frequency required by regulation, you should initiate an inspection and submit a report without waiting for a NORI as not all moderate and low hazard dams have been issued notices.
Select the following links for a form to use to send DEEP Dam Safety a statement of your situation and proposed schedule of compliance with the inspection requirements:
Select a link below to open an Excel Spreadsheet of issued NORIs:

Listing of Dams and Owners issued the 2019 Notice of Required Inspection (Excel)
  {cover page of dam safety permit guidance}

Owner Responsible Inspection Information  (PDF)

This document provides guidance for the Dam Safety Regulatory and Owner initiated inspection processees.

Dam Safety Engineering - How to find an Engineer to Inspect Your Dam

Engineering Firms Responding to a Request for Dam Safety Qualifications - Naugatuck Valley Council of Governments (leave DEEP website)

Inspection Report Form
Two versions of the Inspection Report Form are available:  One for taking hand notes in the field and one for electronic completion and submittal. 
Inspection Report Form  (Fillable Word - for submission to DEEP)

Inspection Report Form (Field Use) - Print and use to take notes in the field (Word)
Inspection Report Form (Field Use) - Print and use to take notes in the field (PDF)
Dam Registration:

All dams must be registered. Please review the fact sheet below. Before filling out a dam registration form, you should verify that you or a former owner did not already register the dam. Contact the Dam Safety Program staff with any questions.
Dam Registration Form - Contact the Dam Safety Program staff to get a form. See below for contact information. 

To assist in the completion of a dam registration form, a diagram of a typical dam has been prepared and is available by selecting the following link:

Sketch of a Dam (PDF) 

Dam Recordation: 

Effective October 1, 2007, Owners of High and Significant Hazard dams are required to file a Notice of a High Hazard Dam or a Notice of A Significant Hazard Dam on the Municipal Land Records. The Notice form and instructions can be found here:



Individual Permit: A Dam Safety Individual Permit is required prior to initiating substantial repairs and alterations to dams. This permit process is used to authorize large scale projects. For smaller scale projects, a general permit may provide authorization through a faster process. Be sure to read the Permit Application Guidance below when preparing an individual permit application.  Download all the application forms, instructions, and supporting attachment information for an individual dam safety permit application by selecting the link below:
Dam Safety Individual Permit Materials 

  {cover page of dam safety permit guidance}

Permit Application Guidance: This document provides guidance for the Dam Safety individual permit application process.

General Permits: Three Dam Safety General Permits were signed on October 16, 2015 and are currently available. These permits provide quick process authorization for many dam-related minor activities which have only minimal environmental impacts.
The General Permit Authorization Table provides a quick view of the three general permits.
You can download the permits, filing forms, the notice form, and fact sheets by selecting the link below:

Fishway Determination. A determination of the need for a fishway is necessary whenever there will be work done that requires a DEEP Dam Safety individual or general permit. The form to use for this determination is available at the link below:

Request for Determination of Need for Fishway - Word Form, PDF

It is recommended that you submit the completed form to the DEEP Inland Fisheries Division and receive a response to include in the application prior to submitting a Dam Safety permit application or general permit filing. Instructions are included on the form.

Public Safety - Be Aware of Boating or Swimming Near Low Head Dams!  A "low head" or "run-of-the-river" dam is a dam across a watercourse that is small and often submerged under the flowing water. They are typically low in height being 12 feet tall or less but they are deceptively dangerous. They can trap and drown swimmers, paddlers, or other water users who pass over the dam into the turbulent waters below the dam. The circulating action of the water passing over the dam can suck persons and their boats into the base of the dam and prevent their escape. As an example, the Wallace Dam on the Quinnipiac River in Wallingford is a low head dam that at times can be very dangerous. The photos following show the Wallace Dam during lower flow periods:

{Wallace Dam from upstream} {Wallace Dam from fish ladder}

Stay clear of these types of dams. You have no way of knowing how deep a scour hole below this dam may be and may not realize how the weight of the flowing water will trap you should you go over. Turn back and warn others you may see in the area to do the same.

Dam Removal:

2011 American Rivers Dam Removal Guidance  (PDF)

Links to websites with dam removal information: (leave DEEP website)

Association of State Dam Safety Officials

American Rivers Dam Removal Resource Page

Links to videos on dam removal projects: (leave DEEP website)

US Fish & Wildlife video on the Finesville Dam Removal (link to YouTube)

American Rivers video Communities and Dam Removal (link to YouTube)

Weather and Hydrology:
NOAA National Weather Service Comprehensive weather information
Intellicast - Commercial weather site
Accuweather Commercial weather site
NOAA Atlas 14 for the northeast is now available.
River Information
NOAA River Gauge   Real time river data with hydrographs
USGS Water Watch Maps of high flow & flooding locations, and real-time stream flow
For further information contact the Dam Safety section at (860) 424-3706 or by email at
Content last updated on September 20, 2019