Client: Affinity Water

EPC Leads: Bev Griffiths & Roger Gomm


 

How to ensure the water supply for 4 million people remains safe and secure even during an emergency.

Introduction

Employing more than 1,400 staff and providing clean water to 3.6 million people across the South East of England, North West London and the Home Counties, having a sound emergency plan and set of procedures in place that have been well tested is vital.

The Client

As a Category 2 Responder under the Civil Contingencies Act 2004, Affinity Water felt that although it had plans in place for day-to-day predictable incidents, such as loss of water, it was time to develop a more robust, broader and disciplined emergency response team and the operation around this area.

The company had been recommended a number of other training providers by colleagues in the water industry, but felt it was important to work with a college that offered pan-industry experience. 

They were looking to:

  • improve discipline around its commander control structure
  • have its emergency plans critiqued
  • get to a level of exemplary practice

“The EPC confirmed they were the people we should be dealing with, within the initial information they supplied us.  Late last year we started to develop the bespoke training that we needed.”

It was really great that they understood exactly what we wanted to do. They had a really clear understanding of what we might be struggling with and were able to pull together a package that covered what we needed.  They were able to advise us the right way to go.”

The EPC provided:

  • bespoke training based on the standards
  • deliverable for gold and silver standard command team
  • took information from industry relevant scenarios and combined it with table top exercises

Result

The feedback was helpful and all the training was well received by the team. The training sparked broad conversations within the company and in turn bolstered the group’s understanding of what it is to be a Category 2 Responder. 

It also made the company look more objectively at its work and processes.

The EPC also put together a critiqued exercise, which in turn highlighted the need to exercise more. The company discovered that it needed to up-skill internally and the overview helped to highlight the pinch points that might be holding development back.

Affinity Water built a rapport with Roger Gomm, who not only delivered the training but also helped critique the policies that it had in place. This consistency gave the group the confidence of being well supported.  Roger ran stop start exercises throughout the day with points of reflection built in.  These pauses allowed the group to reflect as they went and this highlighted as an extremely helpful way of working.

“What came out of the sessions is that although we were doing well, we discovered that we actually needed to review our business continuity planning. It helped us reshape our priorities, which in turn has really helped us as a business.”

“We’re not at the end of the road, but we have confirmed that we are heading in the right direction with confidence.”

Martin Browning, Emergency Planning Co-ordinator, Affinity Water