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DNRC Headquarters
1539 Eleventh Ave. Helena, MT 59601
Phone: (406) 444-2074 | Fax: (406) 444-2684
Questions? Email us

Dam Safety

Tongue River Dam

The Dam Safety Program regulates the construction, operation and maintenance of Montana's dams to protect life and property from damages due to failure. The dam safety program also provides training and outreach to dam owners and engineers and assists with emergency preparedness activities.

Is Your Dam Above Homes, Highways, or Other Structures?

News and Announcements

***NEW*** DOWNSTREAM HAZARD CLASSIFICATION PROCEDURES FOR MONTANA DAMS                                   The Montana Dam Safety Program, as part of the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation (DNRC), has provided this Technical Note 6 (TN6) to assist and guide engineers conducting hazard classification determinations for dams in Montana. The procedures outlined in this technical note are standardized processes developed by the Montana Dam Safety Program to classify dams according to downstream hazards that may be flooded during a dam failure.

TN6 is organized in a logical format to guide the user through the hazard classification process. It is meant as a guidance document and users are encouraged to follow the recommendation contained herein, but have flexibility to use other methods if they meet the intent of the hazard classification process.

Dam Specification Review Tool Finalized!  Version 1.0 now available.
Specifications – always a challenge to review and write, especially for dam construction projects. To assist engineers that review and write dam specifications, AECOM, out of Denver Colorado developed the Dam Specification Review Tool version 1.0. The tool was developed in Microsoft Excel 2010 and contains indexed worksheets that pertain to major parts of a dam construction project, including general requirements, earthwork, drainage pipe, concrete and water control. Each worksheet systematically reminds users of important things that need to be considered through a series of targeted questions. The Tool addresses the most commonly used dam construction topics. Flexibility is provided through the addition of worksheets that can be tailored for a specific project or agency requirements.

This project was funded by the National Dam Safety Act Assistance to States Grant awarded to Montana. Version 1.0 has incorporated comments provided during the Beta test.
Download Dam Specifications Review Tool Here (Excel File)

Montana Extreme Storm Working Group Report
In 2016, the Montana Dam Safety Program assembled a group of experts to evaluate our methodology for determining the inflow design flood for dam spillway analysis in MT.  This report summarizes the groups finding and recommendations.
Montana Extreme Storm Working Group Summary Report (December 2016)

For Dam

Dam Owners

Technical References

Permitting Your
Existing Dam
Permitting Exisitng Dams

Proposing to
Build a New Dam
Building a New Dam

Planning for a
Dam Emergency
Planning for a Dam Emergency

Proposing to Repair
an Existing Dam
Repair an Existing Dam

Rules and

Rules and Regulations

Image and
Video Gallery

Filing a Dam
Safety Complaint


Cool Tools
Cool Tools 

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Archive (Past Issues)

*NEW* Vol. 6 Issue 2 What the HEC? - Selecting the Best HEC Model for the Job; Factoring for Human Factors in Dam Safety Incidents and Failures; Abandonment of Low-Level Outlet Conduits, Think it Through Before you Grout it Through

Contact Dam Safety
Dam Safety
DNRC Water Resources
1424 9th Avenue
PO Box 201601
Helena, MT 59620-1601

Bureau Chief
(406) 444-6816

Michele Lemieux, PE
Dam Safety Program Manager / Civil Engineer
(406) 444-6613

Chadrick Hill 
Civil Engineering Specialist
(406) 444-1358

Administrative Support
(406) 444-0862

Engineering Specialists
Regional Office Map 

Helena Regional Office
(406) 444-9724

Havre Regional Office
(406) 265-5516

Sam Johnson, EI
Billings Regional Office
(406) 247-4423

Larry Schock, CFM
Missoula Regional Office
(406) 542-5885

Marc Pitman, PE CFM
Kalispell  Regional Engineering Specialist
(406) 752-2713

Sterling Sundheim, CFM
Lewistown Regional Office
(406) 538-7459