ARCHIVE: Water supply disruption risks
When a water company has a water or sewerage emergency, including a threat to its supplies, it is required to notify the Department as soon as possible (in accordance with the provisions of the Security and Emergency Measures Direction 1998) and to provide regular progress reports.
- Security and Emergency Measures Direction 1998 (PDF) (40 KB)
Defra will alert other water companies and organisations, as appropriate; assess the situation; and develop and agree a handling and communications strategy.
The water company will deal with the emergency in association with other bodies as necessary such as the Environment Agency, Local Authorities, Emergency Services, Health Authorities. They will keep Defra informed of developments.
Water (and sewerage) companies have plans in place to deal with a wide range of emergencies and these are regularly updated and tested.
The National Security and Emergency Working Group (NSEWG) is chaired by Defra and meets every six months. It evolved from a Home Office Defence Planning Working Group in the 1980s. It provides a forum for discussing and passing on information and advice on natioanl security and emergency planning issues which affect the water industry. The Group's membership consists of water company emergency planning managers, the Environment Agency and Scottish Environment Protection Agency, CPNI, Water UK, and the Devolved Administrations.
Many of the issues discussed at the meetings are sensitive; the minutes are not published.
Further information about planning and drought can be found:
Page last modified: 13 February 2008
Page published: 13 February 2008