The Darwin River Dam is a vital piece of infrastructure, providing around 85 percent of Darwin’s water supply, with only limited supplies available from other sources.
It’s not uncommon for the spillway to overflow late in the season, with levels dropping dramatically in the dry season through general water use and evaporation.
Darwin River Dam is an ungated dam and spillway flow cannot be regulated. Spilling from the dam occurs most years and is expected. Spillway overflow lasts for periods ranging from days to weeks depending on rainfall.
During spillway overflow, river levels downstream of the dam may rise rapidly due to rainfall in the catchment. This may cause sudden changes in levels at road crossings downstream of the dam.
Power and Water doesn’t provide information on downstream river levels, nor predictions about areas that may be inundated during normal spillway overflow. It’s important to consider that localised rainfall also influences water levels in Darwin River downstream of the dam.
For current public warnings and advice, please refer to the Secure NT website
Some years, the Darwin River Dam spillway may overflow during spill events. As it’s an ungated dam, we can't regulate spillway flow. Overflow generally lasts for periods ranging from days to weeks depending on rainfall.
During spillway overflow, downstream river levels can rise rapidly in response to localised rainfall. This may cause sudden changes in levels at road crossings downstream of the dam.
Power and Water can't provide information on downstream river levels, nor predict areas which may be inundated during natural overflow. For current public warnings and advice, please refer to the Secure NT website.
Darwin River Dam level
Darwin River Dam, including what was the picnic area, is closed to the public to ensure consistent quality of Darwin’s critical drinking water supply, ensure safety and prevent vandalism.
Our obligations under national health and safety legislation and reservoir and drinking water safety standards led us to close the dam to the public. However, we maintain managed visitation through prearranged bookings of supervised groups, for example for educational purposes.
A safety induction for school groups and other authorised visitors can be accessed here.