In addition to its primary business of bulk water supply, Umgeni Water is able to provide the following services on a commercial basis:
- Laboratory and Scientific (water quality testing and analysis)
- Infrastructure design and management of infrastructure development (water and sanitation)
- Infrastructure development (primarily rural water and sanitation infrastructure)
- School sanitation
- Consulting (research, scientific, engineering, environmental and management)
- Utility management (Water and Waste Water)
- Training and Capacity Building:Strategic and business planning Operational planning and management Water demand management / Unaccounted for water
ISO 17025 Accredited Laboratory Services Assuring Water Quality
Umgeni Water’s Laboratory Services is a dynamic centre of excellence comprising three modern ISO/IEC 17025 accredited laboratories in Chemistry, Microbiology, and Hydrobiology with a long established reputation of meeting international standards. Modern analytical techniques used a team of fifty-seven highly skilled and dedicated scientists and technicians, enables Umgeni’ Water facility to provides a world-class service 365 days a year. In the latest recertification audit of April 2013, the laboratory was commended for continued accreditation status.
The key objectives of the laboratory in support of Umgeni Water’s primary business:
- Providing assurance that the organisation produces potable water that complies with drinking water standards, assuring that treated effluent complies with wastewater and effluent discharge limits, thereby assuring public health protection from water-borne diseases and water related health impacts.
- Undertaking research and development, generation of scientific data for new infrastructure development, and supporting / auditing water treatment for process selection and optimisation.
- In addition, catchment and river health monitoring is undertaken to assess the status of water resources and raw water supply.
The laboratories form a powerful hub for the analysis of water, in relation to both, water treatment and the associated environment. Water samples from rivers, dams, water treatment and wastewater treatment works are collected by a team of dedicated sampling officers on a daily basis throughout Umgeni Water’s operational area and is assessed in terms of its physical, chemical and microbiological characteristics.
The analytical results are produced within specified times that forms part of a Service Level Agreements with end users. Supported by its Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS), water quality results are captured, validated, stored and reported. In addition, direct access is provided to external users via the Electronic Water Quality Management System (eWQMS), the Blue Drop System (BDS) and the Green Drop System (GDS).
Early warnings and alerts are provided to stakeholders immediately that a breach of quality standards is detected. An incident management protocol is followed, to contain and remedy the breach. The laboratory generates up to 20 000 analyses per month.