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About Dam Safety Office

The Dam Safety Office was established to implement and administer the DAM SAFETY REGULATIONS (published in Government Notice R. 139 of 24 February 2012) which became fully effective in January 1987 and are still in force under the new National Water Act, 1998 [NWA] (Act 36 of 1998) [PDF - 240 KB]. Only dams with a safety risk (i.e. dams with a maximum wall height that exceeds 5,0 m and with a storage capacity of more than 50 000 m3, or any other dam declared as a dam with a safety risk) are subject to these Regulations.


  • The Dam Safety Office's mission is to promote the safety of new and existing dams with a safety risk so as to reduce the potential harm to the public, damage to property and resource quality.


  • Development, implementation and administration of dam safety legislation and policies.

  • Management of the dam safety programme.

  • Enforce/facilitate compliance with the dam safety legislation by dam owners.

  • Technical assessments of dam safety evaluation reports and the various licence applications regarding construction of new dams or upgrading of existing dams. This includes technical evaluation of design reports, design drawings, construction progress and completion reports, operation and maintenance (O&M) manuals and emergency preparedness plans (EPPs).

  • Audit and monitor progress made with the dam safety programme.

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