When the Director finds an unsafe dam constituting an imminent danger to life or property, he shall immediately notify the Department of Emergency Management and confer with the owner. The owner of a dam found to constitute an imminent danger to life or property shall take immediate corrective action. If the owner does not take appropriate and timely action to correct the danger found, the Governor shall have the authority to take immediate appropriate action, without the necessity for a hearing, to remove the imminent danger. The Attorney General may bring an action against the owner of the impounding structure for the Commonwealth’s expenses in removing the imminent danger. There shall be a lien upon the owner’s real estate for the Commonwealth’s expenses in removing the imminent danger. The owner may avoid the Commonwealth’s costs, and recover any damages, upon proving that the dam was known to be safe at the time such action was taken, and that the owner had provided or offered to immediately provide such proof to the Director before the action complained of was taken. Nothing herein shall in any way limit any authority existing under the Emergency Services and Disaster Law (§ 44-146.13 et seq.).
1982, c. 583, § 62.1-115.5; 1986, c. 9; 1988, c. 891.