The National Water Company (NWC) has achieved high levels of operational performance in Jeddah this summer, thanks to the ambitious upgrade strategy of its integrated water and sanitation networks.
Earlier this summer, the NWC began the first phase of a 1.5 million cubic meter strategic storage project which is estimated to cost more than SR 540 million, which has contributed to saving more than one million cubic meters of lost water during some maintenance periods, by stabilizing operations and maintenance in neighborhoods usually affected by consumption increases. Additionally, a SR90 million pipeline connecting Breiman and Al Faisaliah stations was completed, increasing storage capacity in those locations, and adding flexibility to the network during difficult times.
A new leaks detection program has contributed savings of more 11 million cubic meters of water since the beginning of the year, by treating approximately 13,000 leak cases, and testing more than 3525km of networks, with maintenance teams now working 24 hours a day, causing complaints to fall 70 percent compared to the same period last year. Additionally, water distribution in neighborhoods north and south of the city were reduced, with the move to continuous pumping to those localities.
The NWC has also opened a regional laboratory in Jeddah, established according to international standards, and run by qualified national staff. The laboratory is equipped to perform all organic, inorganic, microbial, physical, chemical and microbial tests, applying a public and efficiency testing system and international standard laboratories calibration (ISO / IEC 17025: 2005). This incorporates a Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS), which manages all operations automatically, and is compatible with best-practice quality systems from sample delivery, through tests, recording results and issuing certificates
In total, more than 105 million cubic meters of water have been distributed over the summer, in collaboration with strategic partner SWCC, with the implementation of modern processes – notably the SCADA system for management and distribution – responsible for this summer’s exceptional performance.
Pre-emptive action plans for the summer season also helped; based on accurate supply estimates and a robust pumping plan to cater for expected surges in consumption. Following up these plans via SCADA enables NWC to verify pumping schedules and control any change in the amount of water or pressure either received or distributed, largely thanks to the addition of 350 new pressure sensors in the network, taking the total number of sensors to 580. These sensors are designed to transmit real-time network information to engineers and technicians by telephone.
The application of an advanced technical system through smart devices and wireless technology, enables better management and follow-up by field teams, and speeds up complaints handling by the unified call center. This new system has been implemented in four districts of Jeddah, and following this success will be be rolled out to remaining Jeddah neighborhoods in the coming months.