ROCKVILLE, Md. (AP) — Federal Emergency Management officials are stressing the importance of dam safety.

Federal, state and local officials are marking National Dam Safety Awareness Day on Thursday at Lake Needwood Dam in Rockville with a commemoration of the Johnstown Flood. That flood killed more than 2,000 people when a dam failed in Pennsylvania on May 31, 1889.

Officials will discuss a strategic plan for national dam safety that will be released soon and tour the dam after a commemoration ceremony.

FEMA says there are more than 4,000 deficient dams in the United States. Officials say that number includes more than 1,800 dams that could cause catastrophic loss of life if they failed.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)


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