International crisis management of water utilities standard will be the first of its kind

Issue 53 – September 2013

Water is the source of life. Impaired drinking water services can seriously compromise people's health and comfort, threatening their survival. Similarly, improper disposal of sanitary wastewater and poor drainage harbours epidemics and can cause water contamination and floods. Many countries still lack the knowledge to manage a crisis in drinking water and wastewater services. To address this, ISO is developing a new standard, ISO 11830, the first of its kind on the effective crisis management of water utilities.

Crisis management starts before the onset of a crisis and requires comprehensive preparation during routine operations. ISO 11830 Crisis management of water utilities will make it easier for water utility operators and national regulators to implement efficient emergency management tools. The standard will:

  • provide a globally applicable set of guidelines to ensure that water utilities respond successfully to any crisis situation
  • sketch out the fundamentals of a crisis management system and the steps that water utilities need to take. These steps include preparing for a crisis (pre-crisis phase), dealing with the crisis (crisis phase), and re-establishing the service after a trauma (post-crisis phase).

Summarised from ISO Focus+ July/August 2013.

Published in environment.