Keep safe around dams and waterways

Although our dams and reservoirs are very safe, an emergency is always possible. When you’re around water that is part of a hydropower system, you must understand emergency warning signs. Know what to do during emergencies.

Be aware of the following emergency warning signs when you’re in or around water:

  • Intensified sound of rushing water.
  • Increased water speed or depth.
  • Increased amounts of debris in the water.
  • Changed appearance of water from clear to muddy.
  • Unusually colder water temperatures.

When you’re in the water during an emergency, take the following actions:

  • Drop any items that might weigh you down.
  • Stay calm and lie on your back.
  • Keep your feet up and pointed downstream to avoid hitting rocks and getting tangled.
  • Go with the current and move diagonally across it until you reach shore.
  • Roll onto dry land to drain your boots or waders.

When you’re near the water during an emergency, take the following actions:

  • Move to higher ground.
  • Access the National Weather Service Emergency Alert System on a weather radio.
  • Do not walk through moving water.
  • Avoid driving through flooded areas.
  • Make an evacuation plan for your family in advance and follow it.