Emergency Action Planning



Citizen Action

Citizens Action

What You Can Do

Photo of meeting

There is more you can do as a citizen with a stake in EAP compliance by owners of HHP dams.

Get Involved in Hazard Mitigation for Dams

EAPs are an important part of hazard mitigation, and mitigation is every citizen's opportunity to contribute. Mitigation is the effort to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters. Mitigation is taking action now – before the next disaster – to reduce human and financial consequences later. It involves analyzing risk, reducing risk, and insuring against risk.  Effective mitigation requires that we all citizens understand local risks, address the hard choices, and invest in long-term community well-being. Mitigation actions help ensure public safety, financial security, and self-reliance.

Mitigation strategies rely on working groups that bring together a broad range of government officials (e.g. building codes, planning and zoning, public works, emergency management, engineering, housing, transportation) and officials from such entities as utilities, school systems, water management districts, area businesses, insurance providers, land developers, and non-profit organizations. Do you already fit one of these categories? Or would you like to participate as a concerned citizen? People interested in working on hazard mitigation for dams can partner with their local emergency managers to join this effort to achieve more EAPs on HHP dams. Being interested and dedicated can be more important than extensive knowledge of dams, flooding issues, and mitigation. Local emergency management agencies and CalOES assist working groups with training, workshops and materials.

Although all dams pose a risk to the community, the HHP dams present the greatest population risks and vulnerabilities. As is occurring nationwide, residential development is spreading into the valleys below many dams statewide, causing dams previously rated lower to be elevated to a higher hazard classification. This is a dynamic situation. After the 2005 Katrina event, the FEMA National Dam Safety Program identified the creation of EAP's for all HHP dams nationwide as a significant priority, regardless of whether states such as California have a statutory mandate requiring such planning. If Californians make EAPs for HHP dams one of their priorities, the state government will eventually get the message and act on EAPs.