InWARNTo make statewide emergency response efforts quicker and more effective, the Indiana Water/Wastewater Agency Response Network (InWARN) was launched on August 29, 2007 during a ceremony at the Statehouse.
Modeled after current networks in Florida (FlaWARN) and California (CalWARN), these formalized systems of "utilities helping utilities" deliver mutual aid to members following man-made emergency situations or natural disasters. InWARN's launch date was selected in remembrance of the second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina's landfall on the gulf coast, a time when FlaWARN helped utilities in Mississippi and Alabama recover in the aftermath of the storm.
"While it is very unlikely that utilities in Indiana will ever be damaged by a major hurricane like Katrina, the state's water and wastewater systems can and have been damaged by tornados, floods, ice storms and earthquakes," said Stan Diamond, InWARN Steering Committee chair. "By establishing partnerships and response plans now, utilities and other associations are doing their part to protect the well-being of Hoosiers."
InWARN will allocate utility personnel with the appropriate expertise, equipment and tools where needed to assess and assist the impacted water and wastewater systems in getting their systems operational as quickly as possible. This method of assistance is analogous to triage at a hospital.
Utilities interested in joining the network can do so by completing the Mutual Aid Agreement (MAA). The InWARN network will be managed by the steering committee, working in cooperation with the Indiana Department of Environmental Management. IACT will serve as the network administrator during the first year, developing and maintaining the network's Web site, processing the mutual aid agreements, managing the member database, and supporting other needs.
Utilities and associations interested in joining InWARN can get more information at www.inwarn.org or can contact Adam Watts at 317-234-7426 or email@example.com.
EMAC is a state to state mutual aid agreement that can potentially support the sharing of water sector resources when interstate mutual aid is needed.
The Water Security Division at USEPA published a fact sheet entitled, " Interstate Mutual Aid and Assistance: EMAC Tips for the Water Sector" which is available at www.nationalwarn.org.
The fact sheet describes additional details about EMAC and actions that utilities could take prior to or during an emergency to be informed about how EMAC works.