FEMA and Wastewater comments from the Senate Report

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When reading the Senate Report the Wastewater section stuck out big time. To say it is "alarming" would be an understatement. Oddly enough the FEMA
FEMA: Contingency and Consequence Management Planning for Year 2000 Conversion

Used a "Contingency Plan for Wastewater Collection System " as an example for  contingency planning.

Just thought I would point this out. The Fema document is from February 99. I would highly recommend checking it out.

 Utilities from 100 day report (Wastewater!!!)

While the confidence level of the wastewater industry
       is very high, the recent AMSA survey data indicating
       only a 14% completion rate as of July 1999 is a cause
       for great concern. There is not enough detail available
       to determine how close to completion the vast
       majority of companies are at this point. As of July
       1999, the graphic representation for the remaining
       activities necessary for Y2K remediation before
       January 1 appears to go almost straight up. It may be
       possible that only a few minor tasks remain for full
       completion of Y2K work for many of the companies
       reporting, but this remains unknown. The statistics
       seem to indicate quite the opposite? only 67%
       reported they had completed the assessment stage as
       of July 1999. Knowing what we know about the
       complexity of Y2K remediation and the potential for
       the occurrence of additional unforeseen problems "late
       in the game," we feel justified in saying that we are
       alarmed by these statistics.


       In light of all the concentrated effort that has been
       undertaken, the Committee is surprised by the low
       level of readiness of the wastewater industry reflected
       in the July 1999 AMSA survey. A lack of readiness
       on the part of the wastewater industry can have a
       devastating impact on the drinking water supply, no
       matter how well prepared that sector is.

       All of the AMSA survey participants anticipated
       completion of the repair phase by early fall 1999. This
       leaves virtually no time left for testing for those not
       yet done.

       Another cause of our concern arises solely due to the
       immensity of the water and wastewater sector. The
       power industry pales in comparison to the size,
       scope, and varying degrees of technology that exist
       within the water and wastewater industry. These
       factors make it very difficult to offer any broadbrush
       assessment of the industry.

       The Committee will continue to emphasize the
       importance of readiness, particularly in the
       wastewater sector of this industry in what little time
       remains. We are currently working with the EPA and
       water and wastewater associations to organize a
       summit to take action on remaining concerns in this
       area, and to make further inquiry regarding the current
       readiness of the wastewater industry.

 FEMA: Contingency and Consequence Management Planning for Year 2000 Conversion

Contingency Plan for Wastewater Collection System

The jurisdiction's Wastewater Collection System consists of 3 lift stations, light alarm systems, and gravity sewer lines.

1. Objective of the plan
To provide normal level of service.

2. Criteria and procedures for activating the plan
To ensure that electricity flows out to one or more lift stations, the Public Works Director will assign employees to monitor the system beginning on December 31, 1999, through a night shift into January 1, 2000, on an emergency basis until it is clear that there are no problems with the operation of the system. If an employee discovers a problem, then he or she will notify the Public Works Director (or designee) via (describe primary and backup communication methods for contacting the Director) and describe the nature of the problem. If needed, the Director will notify other employees to report for duty and will assign them emergency responsibilities.

3. Roles, responsibilities, and authority
The Public Works Director will be in charge of activating and implementing this contingency plan. The Director will assign workers in the department as needed. If additional personnel are needed, the Director will have the authority to use personnel from the Parks Maintenance Dept. If the Public Works Director is unavailable, the Sewer Lead Worker will assume the responsibilities of the Director as outlined in this plan.

4. Procedures for operating during or after system failures
* Portable Generators - The jurisdiction has two portable generators that can operate the lift station, and all three lift stations have a generator receptacle so that they can be run by a portable generator. Based on the amount of storage in the lines and the wetwell in the vicinity of the lift stations, the Public Works Director will assign employees to transport and hook up the portable generators to the lift stations. If all three lift stations are not working, the Director will establish a schedule to rotate the two generators among the three lift stations. If necessary, the Public Works Director will try to obtain an additional generator through mutual aid agreement or rental.

* Vacuum Truck - If the generators are not able to handle the flow, the jurisdiction can pump sewage out of the lift stations with the vacuum truck. The Public Works Director will assign employees to use this truck to pump sewage.

* Tanker Truck - The jurisdiction also may be able to pump the sewage into its tanker truck. The Public Works Director will assign employees to pump sewage using this truck.

* Lift Station Bypass - Because of the topography in the vicinity of lift station #1, we would be able to establish a line to bypass that lift station. If needed, the Public Works Director will contact a contractor to construct this line. This is not an option for lift stations #2 and #3 because the distance to a manhole, which discharges into a gravity line, is too great.

* Temporary Overflows - To avoid sewer backups in citizens' houses if the above options do not handle overflow, the jurisdiction may have to establish temporary overflows from the lift stations. The jurisdiction will work with the State Environmental Protection Agency to try to minimize the use and impact of this option.

* Water restrictions - If a jurisdiction-wide or regional power outage lasts more than 24 hours, the jurisdiction will consider restricting community water usage to reduce flow of wastewater through the system.

-- Brian (imager@home.com), September 23, 1999


I'm liking Y2K less and less each day.

-- Dog Gone (layinglow@rollover.now), September 23, 1999.

Dog Gone

I noticed your post previously that jogged my memory about this. Running water is not going to help much if it has no place to go.

-- Brian (imager@home.com), September 23, 1999.

Oh but please. I need to flush.

-- Mara Wayne (MaraWayne@aol.com), September 23, 1999.

The jokes are too easy but this wastewater disposal issue is deadly serious. If you do not have a septic tank, and the sewars backup, are there any realistic statagies?

-- Lars (lars@indy.net), September 23, 1999.

Plug the line from house to sewer, else it backs up into any outlet in your house. Built an outdoor jon.

-- Tommy Rogers (Been there@Just a Thought.com), September 23, 1999.

Have a plumber install a sewage backflow valve. Do it now.

-mommacarestx, in a city on the Navy list as likely to have sewage treatment failure...

-- mommacarestx (harringtondesignX@earthlink.net), September 23, 1999.

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