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Engineering & Public Works

Water Services

The Water Services section provides, operates and maintains services that are necessary to supply good quality drinking water to the public. They must also maintain volume and pressure levels to meet the demand fire flow situations, while continually maintaining and improving the water distribution network.

Responsibilities of this section are maintenance of Watermains, Water Connections, Water Meters, Fire Hydrants, Valves, Pressure Reducing Stations, as well as Customer Service.

Watermain Maintenance
Involves the daily maintenance for repair of watermains, flushing to maintain water quality, inspection and monitoring of the cathodic protection system to protect steel watermains from corrosion. Construction involves replacement of watermains which have reached the end of their economic maintenance life cycle or that are undersized for the service area.

Water Connection Maintenance
Involves the daily maintenance for the repair, renewal, disconnection, and locating of water connections that services individual properties. These are the lines that supply water from the watermain to the customers point of use.

Water Meters Maintenance
Involves the repair, replacement, delivery, installation, reading and testing of water meters. The meters record the amount of water a customer consumes and bill accordingly. The sewage cost to the customer is directly proportionate to their water usage.

Fire Hydrants Maintenance
Activities involve the repair, servicing, testing, painting and clearing of fire hydrants. The fire hydrants are maintained to the fire code standards. This section responds when a fire hydrant has been damaged in an Motor Vehicle Accident.

Valve Maintenance
Activities involve the repair, replacement, painting, clearing and cleaning of control valves. These are key components of the system as they serve to isolate areas of the system for repair. As an area increases in population density, additional valves are installed to lessen the impact of watermain shut downs.

Pressure Reducing Stations Maintenance
The water system has 13 pressure reducing stations which reduces the GVRD's higher operational pressure down to the City's operational water pressure of 95 p.s.i.. The other function of these stations is to monitor the water flows and pressures at the point of entry to our system. This function is supervised by a computerized radio monitoring system centralized in the Operations Yard. The activities in the area involves the repair, servicing and monitoring of a key component of the system.

Customer Service
Responds to a large volume of requests for service from the public. The types of services provided are "turn off" and "on" for repairs, location of water utilities, water quality, flow test, advice on repairs, low pressure, frozen services connections, and water restriction inquiries.

Emergency Service Response
Has a two person crew on-call responding to all water related emergencies. Emergency response is an important function in maintaining a pressurized water system, avoiding or minimizing the amount of damage to property, both private and public.

General Information
Overview of the Water Distribution System
Richmond's waterworks inventory consists of 615 km of watermains. In addition there are 13 pressure regulating valve stations, where the water pressure from the Greater Vancouver Regional District (GVRD) supply watermains are reduced to the maximum operational pressure of 100 p.s.i. for distribution within Richmond.

Water Sprinkling Restrictions
From June to September each year, water sprinkling restrictions are in effect throughout the Greater Vancouver Regional District (GVRD), including the City of Richmond. These restrictions are required to conserve the region's limited water supply, which are particularly needed throughout the summer months.

Flushing Watermains
The G.V.R.D. has determined that the City of Richmond will not be required to have a re-chlorination system, a savings of approximately $1,000,000.00 in capital costs as our water quality is excellent and above average. The main reason, that we can boast of such an accomplishment, is due to the decision to only utilize non-metallic material for our watermains. In addition, City forces perform a comprehensive watermain flushing program on an annual basis.

This method is called "unidirectional flushing" which has been used in Richmond for many years. The Richmond Water Service Section has been singled out, by the industry, as a leader in this method of flushing as demonstrated by our water quality and the low volume of customer complaints relating to the water quality.

Contact Us: Water Services 

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