Quake Centre launches Levels of Service guidance to improve the seismic resilience of water assets.
The Quake Centre in partnership with Opus and Water New Zealand launched the Levels of Service Performance Measures for the Seismic Resilience of Three Waters Network Delivery at a workshop during the Water New Zealand Conference in Hamilton in September this year. The purpose of the guidelines is to define Levels of Service that are suitable for stages of recovery from a seismic event and then to apply them to a process of improving the resilience to earthquakes of potable, storm and wastewater (3 waters) delivery systems. Whilst focusing on seismic hazard, these guidelines are also applicable to other natural disasters.
Seismic resilience of a 3 waters network can be defined as the ability of the system to still operate effectively despite damage caused by an earthquake. This resilience may be due to the network’s ability to absorb the energy with minimum damage or it may be due to the ability of the whole system to adapt rapidly to the changes caused by the event or events. Ideally a system has the ability to be both tough and flexible. The system is not simply the physical assets but also incorporates the people and processes that are central to the delivery of the service.
Why are these guidelines important?
The guidelines are designed help build resilience into 3 waters infrastructure by allowing a realistic discussion on what Levels of Service can and cannot be expected if a seismic event occurs and therefore the risks a community carries. This should inform the discussion between engineers, asset managers, the community and its leaders in regards to:
What do the guidelines contain?
The guidelines comprise a number of elements. At the highest level there are community based measures which are aimed at elected representative and members of residential and business communities. Overlaying these community measures is a hierarchy of critical services. The combination of the community measures and the hierarchy of critical services provide input into templates that can be used to assist the process of planning for or managing a post-earthquake scenario.
The guidelines can be found here.