The Ontario Municipal Water Association (OMWA) and the Water & Wastewater Regulatory Compliance Group (WWRCG) are once again collaborating to deliver a free fully-interactive event to discuss: “Positioning Your Organization for Successful Continuity of Water & Wastewater Services During the COVID-19 Emergency.”
This one-hour, online event is scheduled for 11:00 a.m., Thursday, April 9, 2020.
The event will feature a fully interactive “discussion room” format and the number of participants will be limited and limited to one registration per municipalities/utilities.
The OMWA and WWRCG have developed an online questionnaire consisting of several questions on various COVID-19 water & wastewater related operational issues that each association has identified based on input from our respective members.
After you register, you will receive a registration confirmation email within 8 hours and a link to the online questionnaire that will be the foundation for the event discussions. We would suggest that each municipality/utility coordinate their registration and their response. Participants will be expected to complete the Poll questionnaire by 4:00 p.m. Wednesday, April 8th. The data from the completed questionnaire will then be compiled and presented on Thursday at 11:00 by our moderators, OMWA President Mike Mortimer, Justyna Burkiewicz from WWRCG and Laura Smit, OMWA Board Director.
Our registrants will then be welcome to discuss results, ask follow-up questions, provide further clarification or to voice their thoughts and opinions during the event to the benefit of all participants.
Once again, participation in this free fully interactive “discussion room” is limited, so register as soon as possible. Please register as a municipality/utility and be sure to submit your answers and feel free to ask any other specific questions you may have before Wednesday, April 8 at 4:00 p.m.
To register in advance for this webinar, click here.
Michael Mortimer (President, OMWA)
Justyna Burkiewicz (Member of WWRCG), (Manager, Water & Wastewater Regulatory Compliance, Peel Region)
Laura Smit, (Board Member, OMWA), (Board Member, WCWC), ( Superintendent of Water Treatment and Supply, City of Orillia)
This one-hour event will feature a fully interactive “discussion room” format and the number of participants will be limited and limited to one registration per municipality/utility.
Disclaimer: Registrants acknowledge that this webinar may be recorded and may be shared online with participants and non-participants. Participant comments or questions my be included in the recording.
First and foremost, I hope this message finds everyone healthy and spending quality time with loved ones during the uncertain period ahead. In times like this, it is also important to remember those less fortunate to help them out when we can, and when it is safe to do so.
These are some of the most challenging times we have faced collectively as a country, province, and municipality. There is uncertainty over day-to-day life, growing concern for our elderly and medically-vulnerable citizens, and anxiety over our well-being and the economy consume our thoughts. Whether you are a small business owner, a banker, or a restaurateur, there are varying perspectives of what this is doing to everyday life. It is an extremely fluid environment that we are all living and adapting to daily.
Water and wastewater professionals are no different.
The world of water and wastewater is unique in the sense that we are not deemed an essential service but yet we are absolutely necessary to ensure the continued public health of our communities. We are not able to just pack up our belongings and go home; we are not able to leave a water main break or a blocked sewer for the next week; we are not able to ignore a low-chlorine residual alarm or a high-level alarm at a sewage pumping station; we are not able to just stop sampling when our normal testing locations have been closed because of this pandemic.
And we don’t want to go home. Water and wastewater professionals are extremely dedicated individuals, committed to ensuring the provision of safe drinking water and the environmentally-sound conveyance of wastewater. There has been no threat to either during this pandemic, and for that we should be extremely grateful, but this is also different for those of us who do this work day-to-day. The threat is not a low-chlorine residual or a looming summer storm, but a threat we have little to no control over. And the question lingers: What if our workforce is impacted?
Continue reading “President’s message about COVID-19”
The international professional services company, Stantec, has given the OMWA permission to post their recent whitepaper on the recent coronavirus (COVID-19) and its relevance to water and wastewater professionals and utilities. We are honoured to be able to share it with our readers. As the paper notes,
As water treatment professionals, we want to inform stakeholders of the current state of knowledge on coronaviruses as it relates to our practice.
Please click here to download the PDF version. The original blog post from Stantec can be read here.
(Please note, this PDF has been updated since this post was first published. If you downloaded the paper before Mar. 20, please do so again to get the latest version.)
Developing and writing effective standard operating procedures
Part two: When Should SOPs Be Written?
By Ken MacDonnell, P. Eng.
Professor, Fleming College
Assuming you already have an SOP development program in place (see part 1), then it is a question of setting a priority for the SOPs to be developed.
A hierarchy of procedures will determine the order of development starting with procedures that represent an activity with a substantial risk of impacting either the health and safety of employees or the public. Even after all SOPs have been developed and implemented, there is still work to be done with respect to procedures:
- New employees should be properly trained on Standard Operating Procedures (do not inundate them with all SOPs and expect full understanding).
- Review of existing SOPs every three years (at a minimum) to ensure they are still relevant and reflect how the task is being done. Just like you need to update your MSDS sheets every three years, your procedures should not be any different. If changes are made to a procedure, don’t forget to document the change and make sure that all copies are also changed.
- New equipment / chemicals / etc. may require a change in SOPs. If you make a change from Alum to PACl as your coagulant, it will likely mean that the operational set points will also change. This must be reflected in all SOPs affected by this change and this must be done immediately.
If you do not currently have a comprehensive SOP program, then it is imperative that you begin to develop a program.
Continue reading “Developing and writing effective standard operating procedures”