The American Water Works Association (AWWA), along with other water agencies, announced a Joint Policy Statement on Mutual Aid & Assistance Networks. This "Utilities Helping Utilities" concept encourages utilities and local/state governments to establish intrastate mutual aid and assistance networks.
"Hurricane Katrina was a real wake up call to the whole country," said AWWA Executive Director Jack Hoffbuhr. "The water community has a long history of working towards emergency preparedness, and these mutual aid networks are the next step. They will provide rapid, short-term deployment of emergency assistance to any water or wastewater utility affected by either natural or manmade events."
According to the joint statement: "A pre-established agreement among a network of utilities can complement and enhance local capabilities to prepare for and respond to a broad range of threats, both natural and man-made. The establishment of such intrastate mutual aid and assistance networks is a core principle of the National Preparedness Goal developed by the Department of Homeland Security."