Till huvudinneh�llet

The Swedish model for handling dam safety

The dam owners

The dam owner has a very far-reaching responsibility stipulated in the Environmental Code to do what’s needed to ensure dam safety and is strictly liable for the consequences in case of a dam failure. The dam owner shall by himself continuously establish and follow routines for operator’s control. He shall also have knowledge about the consequences that may occur in case of malfunctioning technique or organisation and use the best available technology to avoid damage to others. For dams classified as dangerous activities according to the Civil Protection Act the dam owner is obliged to keep or pay for emergency preparedness to a reasonable extent and to perform risk analyses.

The county administrations

The county administrations are the supervisory authorities on dam safety. They are also responsible for supervision of the rescue service of the municipalities and in some situations they have an operative commanding role within the rescue service. The county administrations have also the assignment to coordinate the physical planning in the county and to examine the municipal oversight planning from a safety point of view.

The municipalities

The municipalities are responsible for rescue service for example connected to flood events and dam failure. Physical planning for the use of land and water is also a responsibility for the municipality. They are also assigned to supervise the dam owners’ compliance with the Civil Protection Act.

The river groups

River coordination groups have been formed for the major watercourses in Sweden by the respective county administrations. The river groups constitute an important element in the development of regional networks and competence concerning floods and dam safety. The river groups constitute a network linking county administrations, municipalities, hydropower companies, emergency call centres, the National Road and Rail Administrations etc.


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