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A group of Kansas City District subject matter experts met with members of the Stockton Lake community Wednesday, July 31, to practice what would need to happen if an unusual significant flooding or dam failure event happened there.

The Kansas City District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at Stockton Lake conducted a Tabletop Exercise Wednesday, July 31, with the local emergency management communities around Stockton Dam. The exercise showcased joint Corps and community preparedness and how agencies would communicate and coordinate efforts on community preparedness during high releases or an extreme, rare flood event.
During the exercise the Corps shared it regularly assesses conditions and risks associated with its civil works projects and Stockton Dam is structurally sound, performing as designed and emergency preparedness and protection of human life and safety are paramount. 
“This is a unique opportunity to coordinate and visualize how groups and entities should and could communicate in the event of an emergency incident.” Lila Foster, Osceola, said. “All of our actions would be crucial in being prepared and saving lives in our community.”
Dams are assessed regularly on a daily, annual, and five- and 10-year inspection schedules. A 10-year periodic assessment was recently completed at Stockton Lake and resulted in a Dam Safety and Classification of DSAC 3. This rating at Stockton is driven by the population at risk downstream and the potential for a large volume of water from Stockton Dam in the event of overtopping, precipitated by an extreme, rare flood event. 
Assessment tools are used to further develop communication and emergency preparedness plans to best inform the public. Up-to-date, coordinated emergency preparedness serves the community and takes all conditions at the dam into account. Local emergency management agencies are the front lines of emergency preparedness in all communities. They work in close coordination with the Corps and other agencies. These exercises are routine opportunities to identify areas for improvement in our shared responsibility for emergency preparedness.
Susan Abbott, civil engineer with the Kansas City District, said, “The focus of today's tabletop exercise was on communicating flood risk and practicing responses to an extreme flood event. Good communication is key during an emergency event. A tabletop exercise allows USACE and local emergency management agencies to improve their knowledge related to how dams perform, the risks associated with dams, and how best to respond to a dam emergency or extreme flood event.”

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