Mutual Aid and Assistance for Drinking Water and Wastewater Utilities
A mutual aid and assistance network provides water and wastewater utilities with the means to quickly obtain help in the form of personnel, equipment, materials and associated services from other utilities to restore critical operations impacted during an emergency.
Becoming a member of a mutual aid and assistance network before an emergency can make all the difference when your community’s water or wastewater system is in need of help. Use the resources below to ensure you have an effective support system in place.
Learn about WARN
A Water and Wastewater Agency Response Network (WARN) is a network of "utilities helping utilities" within a state to respond to and recover from emergencies by sharing resources with one another. Learn about how WARNs work in the videos below.
"Background on WARN Initiative" provides information on Water and Wastewater Agency Response Networks (runtime 4:32 min).
"WARNS in Action" presents the types of events in which WARNs can be utilized and discusses in detail one specific WARN response (runtime 2:47 min).
Join a WARN
WARNs are built on a strong utility membership base. Drinking water, wastewater, public, private, large, and small – all types of water utilities can benefit from membership in their state’s WARN.
Access WARN resources
- Each intrastate WARN enters into a mutual aid and assistance agreement that best meets the member utility needs. These agreements clarify liability, reimbursement, response procedures and joint planning efforts. Standardized Mutual Aid and Assistance Agreement (DOC)(13 pp, 112 K) .
Explore the value of a WARN Membership.
See the following documents for model agreements based on several existing WARNs:
- Small Water Systems: A Vital Component of WARN
- Tribal Water Systems: A Vital Component of WARN
- Wastewater Systems: A Vital Component of WARN
- State Primacy Agencies: A Vital Component of WARN
Integrating WARN and other Mutual Agreements
- Read our WARN with other mutual aid agreements document to integrate with other mutual aid and assistance agreements
Access WARN training tools
Learn about how tabletop exercises (TTX) can strengthen WARNs.
WARNs are strengthened by regular training and exercises. Use the materials below to help your WARN develop and execute a TTX.
Do it yourself:
- Plan your own training event with the TTX Exercise Facilitator Guide