USACE Kansas City District holds exercise at Truman Lake to strengthen dam safety coordination with local authorities

Kansas City District, Northwestern Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Published Sept. 29, 2021
Harry S. Truman Powerhouse tainter gates operating in order to prevent flooding upstream of the dam in the spring of 20

Harry S. Truman Powerhouse tainter gates operating in order to prevent flooding upstream of the dam in the spring of 2020.

Local Emergency Management Agencies are the front lines of emergency preparedness in your community. They work in close coordination with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and other agencies. USACE regularly assesses conditions and risks associated with our Civil Works projects, which include 18 dams with reservoirs. Eight are in Missouri, eight are in Kansas with one each in Iowa and Nebraska.

A tabletop exercise for Truman Dam and the communities that surround and are downstream from the lake took place at Truman Lake September 29, 2021. Representative from several local and regional emergency management agencies joined USACE to practice scenarios and coordinate communication priorities.

“These exercises are opportunities to identify areas for improvement in our shared responsibility for emergency preparedness and an emphasis on the protection of human life and safety as our top priority,” said Pendo Duku, Dam Safety Program Manager for the Kansas City District.

Conducted on a 4-year cycle, it will inform joint USACE, City and County Emergency Managers, and community preparedness and how we’d communicate and coordinate efforts on community preparedness during high releases or an extreme, rare flood event.

Truman Dam is monitored frequently and is structurally sound and operates as designed. The dam provides many benefits such as flood risk reduction, hydropower production, water supply, recreation opportunities and others, but also comes with flood risk from operational releases during high water events.

Coming later this year, the National Inventory of Dams – known as the NID – will provide updates on new inundation mapping tools for USACE dams to increase knowledge of potential outcomes for planning and community preparedness prior to and during flood events. The NID website is under development and it will be launched later in 2021.

Local emergency managers commented that the inundation maps that will be part of the NID will be very helpful in giving local leaders a visual cue as to which structures and homes could be at risk in a flood event.

Our emergency preparedness is to serve the community during flood events. The NID will include new content for USACE dams that can help safety professionals, emergency managers and communities understand dam related flood risks.

For more information, USACE recommends you visit your local county or city emergency management websites to sign up for cellphone alerts and information.

For a description of how the Dam Safety program works, see the video at


Kansas City District Pubic Affairs
Kansas City, Mo.

Release no. 21-056