Harnessing data to meet alarm system standard

Water company telemetry systems generate thousands of alarms each day, with the risk of control rooms becoming overwhelmed and missing critical alerts ever present.

Applied correctly, data and analytics can filter out the noise, said Matthew Hawkridge, chief technology officer, Ovarro.

With the expectation on water companies to become more proactive in their network management, failure to act on the stream of data coming into control rooms and align with recognised industry standards can have far reaching consequences.

Control rooms are a 24/7 central point for water and wastewater operational information, and the hub for incident and crisis management.

UK water utilities receive between 40-60,000 alarms from SCADA systems per quarter, on average. During a major event such as a storm, this can be significantly higher.

If an alarm is not actioned and subsequently leads to an event, such as pollution or a tap water quality issue, there could be serious penalties from regulators, impacting on targets, performance league tables and customer satisfaction, and potentially leading to fines or prosecutions....

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