Bureau of Reclamation to Close Davis Dam Road

Will consult with local communities on impact

Media Contact: Robert Walsh, 702-293-8421

For Release: March 31, 2004

On April 12, 2004, the Bureau of Reclamation will close the roadway over Davis Dam to all vehicle traffic, effective at 8:00 a.m. The closure will be in effect 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for an indefinite time. Pedestrian access to the dam will still be allowed.

The closure is the latest in a series of security measures Reclamation has taken at the dam since 1997, when the self-guided tours of the dam were discontinued. After September 11, 2001, truck traffic over the dam was prohibited, and a contractor was hired to provide 24 hour security at the dam. In 2003, the roadway was closed to all vehicles exceeding one ton in weight.

This closure is the result of an ongoing assessment of security needs at the dam. Reclamation deems it necessary to protect the dam and ensure it continues to protect the lives and property of the citizens of Bullhead City, Laughlin and other downstream communities along the lower Colorado River.

Reclamation had discussed a possible closure of the road with Mohave and Clark County officials before deciding to proceed with it. Additional discussions are planned with State of Nevada and State of Arizona officials as well as community leaders from Bullhead City and Laughlin. Members of Congress from Arizona and Nevada also have been notified of the closure and Reclamation’s intent to work with them, the states, the counties and the communities to assess and address its potential impacts.

Completed in 1953, Davis Dam re-regulates releases from Hoover Dam to help the United States meet its Colorado River water delivery obligations to Mexico, provide some incidental flood control, and provide electrical power for users in Arizona, Nevada and California.

The roadway across the top of the dam served as a major crossing of the Colorado River until 1987, when a new bridge was completed about two miles downstream of the dam to link the communities of Bullhead City, Ariz., and Laughlin, Nev. Since then, the road has primarily served recreational users, but it also has been used as an alternative route in emergencies. Since the partial closure of the road last year, only about 40 vehicles cross the dam each day.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at www.usbr.gov and follow us on Twitter @USBR.