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Printer Friendly VersionSelected Information - Completed Research

CP108  Reassuring Public Confidence after Sewage Flooding Sewerage
Increasingly Water Utilities are facing legal action over risks to public health after being flooded by sewage. Water Utilities need to be able to mount a robust defence of their position and provide reassurance on measures to protect public health.

Flooding of areas of public access with sewage or wastewater effluent leads to pathogen contamination, and many persist longer than E coli even after cleanup and disinfection. Quarantine periods based on E coli may therefore be inadequate. This research will provide Water Utilities with reliable and comprehensive assessment of the risks from sewage flooding which will establish appropriate measures to ensure public health is protected locally. WRc will be working with the Public Health Laboratory Service (PHLS) to identify pathogen types to be investigated.

Benefits

  • Enables Water Utilities to respond effectively and efficiently with clearly defined actions for dealing with sewage flooding
  • Provides Utilities with authoritative scientific advice on health risk posed by flooding incidents to defend legal challenges
  • Enables site specific scenario testing of risks from flooding.
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Summary of the £1.5 million per annum research programme

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