The COVID-19 (CV19) pandemic brought historic disruption to our lives and work. While at the onset, wastewater collection systems operations faced exceptional maintenance and safety challenges, new insights and opportunities for change became apparent at a handful of forward-looking utilities.
Attempting to limit person-to-person contact, many utilities implemented staff rotations. Yet, these measures reduced maintenance capacity, affecting essential routines such as cleaning. Adding more stress, sewer-unfriendly objects started to rapidly appear in collection systems including “flushable wipes”, face masks and latex gloves. As a result, there was a significant increase of build-up and blockages leading to SSOs and fouled pumps.
Where the pandemic created O&M resource limitations, it also illuminated an opportunity to transform decades-old cleaning practices through the adoption of IoT technology to fill those resource O&M gaps. The end result is that utilities can gain greater efficiency and concurrently lower organizational stress.
- Review the national impact of COVID-19 from a collection systems operations perspective
- Examine and understand how technology is being applied to assist in times of need
- Learn how to leverage existing technology in collection systems to leverage greater efficiencies and lower organizational stress.