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Printer Friendly VersionSelected Information - Completed Research

CP382  Drinking Water Safety Plans - Business as Usual Business Planning
Project Appreciation and Objectives

Required by DWI since 1st October 08, Drinking Water Safety Plans (DWSPs) assess drinking water risks from source to tap; identifying, with numerical values, the likelihood and consequences of identified threats. Remedial measures to address unacceptable risks then feed into the normal business planning process.

The majority of UK water companies now have considerable experience of applying risk based management approaches to the distribution network through Distribution and Operations Management Systems (DOMS) and to water treatment works. However, many have much less developed methodologies for quantifying risks to surface water and groundwater catchments.

Although there is no prescribed timetable, DWSPs need to be regularly reviewed and updated, particularly in light of any significant change to risk. Rather than repeating intensive and expensive desk-studies, a business-as-usual approach should be adopted when identifying new risks or updating DWSPs.

This project helped Companies to:

  • Use comparative analysis to perform robust risk assessments for surface water and groundwater catchments; and
  • Develop a robust risk assessment framework to maintain Drinking Water Safety Plans (DWSPs) using business-as-usual processes.

Benefits to Clients

  • Improved regulatory performance by demonstrating robust methodology leading to more likelihood of DWI providing Preliminary Letters of Support for schemes that address the identified issues.
  • Cost savings through the implementation of business-as-usual processes to maintain DWSPs, rather than intensive desk-top exercises.
  • Cost savings through the identification of the most appropriate catchment analysis from a readily available and relevant information resource.

Work Programme

  1. Start-up meeting; agreeing project boundaries.
  2. Collate data / techniques; producing information archive on appropriate techniques for catchment analysis and the key datasets.
  3. Generate idealised test catchments; producing anonymised test areas to demonstrate appropriate techniques for catchment analysis.
  4. Comparison analysis; evaluating water company submissions against idealised catchments to show variation in expected risk output.
  5. Produce high level business process and data requirement; illustrating how DWSP production can be implemented using business-as-usual processes.

Project Output

  • Resource archive - providing data and techniques for catchment analysis.
  • Individualised reports for each participant, based on company methodology compared to idealised catchment data and analysis.
  • High level business process and data requirement for business-as-usual maintenance of DWSPs.

Related WRc Work

  • Catchment based risk assessment for impacts form on-site wastewater treatment works, SNIFFER, 2008.
  • Development of highways runoff risk assessment tool, Highways Agency and Environment Agency, 2008.
  • Managing microbial risk of regulatory compliance, CP322, 2008 - ongoing.

WRc's Portfolio Programme
Summary of the £1.5 million per annum research programme

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