Vigorous Emergency Response and Capital Improvement Plans in Place for 2021 

Rowland Heights, CA (December 30, 2020) – During this unprecedented time in our state’s history, Rowland Water District is assuring its customers that it is in full compliance with America’s Water Infrastructure Act (AWIA). Passed by Congress in 2018, the AWIA requires that all community water systems serving populations greater than 3,300 persons must assess the risks to, and resilience of, its system.  Rowland Water currently delivers 10 million gallons of safe drinking water to about 58,000 people every day.

“While we can’t predict the future, we can certainly work as a team in planning for the consequences of what it may bring,” explains Tom Coleman, Rowland Water District General Manager. “The District has recently identified 15 top critical assets, which include pipes, treatment and storage facilities, and automated systems, and we have identified sound mitigation efforts that can be implemented to reduce asset vulnerability. Those efforts entail facility and cyber security enhancements, seismic retrofits and upgrades, and wildfire mitigation, among others.”

According to the AWIA, each system must prepare or revise, where necessary, an emergency response plan that incorporates the findings of that agency’s assessment. This includes plans and procedures that can be implemented, and identification of equipment that can be utilized, in the event of a threat to the community water system’s ability to deliver safe drinking water. Currently, the District has 17 potable water storage reservoirs with a 47 million gallon capacity serving the District’s daily customer demand.

“To whatever extent possible, we will continue to coordinate with local emergency planning committees to develop the most effective strategies to aid in the detection of malevolent acts or natural hazards that threaten the security or resilience of our system,” adds Coleman. “As part of our strategic plan we are investing in innovative and failsafe technologies to maintain our resiliency and increase response time during emergencies.”

Further supporting its commitment to infrastructure improvements, Rowland Water’s Board of Directors also recently approved nearly $600,000 in additional capital project funding for its 2020/2021 operating budget.  The funds will be allocated towards a capital improvement plan that includes replacement of several District pipelines, valves, and meters.

“Replacements such as these are evaluated and prioritized based on the age of the materials, internal and external stresses, and performance, as well as leaks and breaks,” explains Dave Warren, Assistant General Manager.   “We evaluate these factors frequently and adjust our spending and project priorities as additional field data becomes available.  Planning prudently for the future is part of our core competencies here at the District and we are pleased to inform the community that we are well prepared for the future.”

Capital improvement spending recommendations for the next fiscal year include:

  • Anaheim Puente Pipeline Replacement Project
  • General Valve Replacements
  • Large Meter Replacements
  • Office Storage Project

Rowland Water is required to complete a Risk and Resilience assessment no later than December 31, 2020 and an Emergency Response Plan (ERP) no later than June 30, 2021. Under the current guidelines, both of those plans must be reviewed and updated every five years.

To learn more about Rowland Water District, its current infrastructure projects and strategic plan, visit the District’s website at www.rowlandwater.com.