ASDSO Dam Safety Toolbox

On-Demand Webinar: How to Conduct a Successful PFMA - Lessons Learned from Past Successes and Failures

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Association of State Dam Safety Officials, 2018

Potential failure modes analyses (PFMA) was first used in dam safety over twenty years ago. Although thousands of PFMA workshops have been conducted since it was first introduced, the use and application of PFMAs is still mostly limited to larger federal agencies and occasionally by others on larger projects. PFMA is a tool and a framework to evaluate dam and levee safety. It has fundamentally changed the way many now approach assessing and solving dam and levee safety issues. It’s the first question asked by some prior to deciding if actions or expenditures are warranted – “So what’s the potential failure mode?” The PFMA process has evolved over the years with new twists, ideas, and improvements to the process. Still, improvements are needed, some of which have been pointed out in the Oroville Spillway Independent Forensic Team Report. Preparation, process, and team composition remain key factors in the success or failure of a PFMA. This webinar will provide examples (both good and bad) and some suggested guidance.

Key Take-aways:

  • A brief overview of the evolution of the PFMA process,
  • A snapshot of where we are today in conducting PFMAs (the good, the bad, and the ugly),
  • A discussion of common pitfalls in preparing for and executing PFMAs,
  • A summary of some of the essential elements of a successful PFMA, and
  • Some thoughts on the future of PFMAs and how they might be scaled down for smaller projects.

Access Training Here

Speaker(s): Douglas D. Boyer

Revision ID: 2301
Revision Date: 08/19/2022