By: Pete Olson Sr., Wachs Water Services Outsourcing can be defined as "the strategic…
With the growth of catastrophic weather events such as droughts, water utilities have a renewed sense of urgency when it comes to improving their aging infrastructure. Leaks and service disruptions, particularly in water-scarce regions, aren’t being tolerated by customers and commissions. However, water utilities simply don’t have the capital necessary to make all the improvements across their networks, and so they need to bring empirical evidence to support repair and replacement decisions.
As a result, many utilities are increasing their focus on work and asset management data going forward. It will be the basis for investment planning, providing needed clarity for capital spending decisions and justification for implementing preventative maintenance strategies.
Wachs Water Services solution is to help utilities minimize the damage caused by failure. We focus on control point information that consists of three categories of data: location (being able to identify and find the specific water main valve when needed), operational (knowing the operability of the specific water main valve) and physical (knowing the bury structure and type of the specific valve). All three categories of information are critical in order for a utility to be able to respond and reduce the impact and cost of failure. When a water main breaks, the information that is needed includes the location of the break, the size of the main, the specific location of the associated water main valves that must be closed to allow for repairs to be made. In addition to the location, the condition of the valve and valve structure is also a determining factor in the real cost of the main break. Wachs Water Services crews are trained to quickly collect critical information and directly address any operational control point issue and provide the data and corrective actions back to the utility as part of a practical asset management program.