The telemetric system tells us everything that is happening at our sites. We can monitor phenomena such as rainfall, wind direction and speed, dam levels, and temperature. With a few clicks, you can go back to access daily data from previous years in case you need to do a comparison. “ „

André says humans still play an important role, as they need to do inspections and maintenance. He lists some of a smart water network’s potential challenges as constrained funding, poor control systems (revenue), limited engineering skills (especially in rural areas), and the difficulty to attract the necessary skills. At some municipalities, poor information technology systems could also pose a problem as well as asset management, with substantial maintenance backlogs. Sometimes a large amount of information is often still paper based and not smart. As far as opportunities go, André says the technology is simple and quick to implement. “It could be implemented and managed remotely, and there is a high return on investment.” There are few legacy systems to integrate and these are embedded at the client; so, you can keep it relatively secure. “Successful integration is critical. There is a large upside with quick wins. Successes are seen by building and maintaining hydraulic models, and that is setting the scene for a smart water network,” concluded Drakenstein’s water services expert.

André Kowalewski, Manager of Water and Wastewater Services at Drakenstein Municipality, explains the benefits of using smart water technology.


VARS | July

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