Contaminant Ingress into Distribution systems (CID)

Lead Research Organisation: University of Sheffield
Department Name: Civil and Structural Engineering

Abstract

The quality of potable water is of vital importance to public health. However, contamination events are observed to occur even in the tiny volume (relative to total supply volume) of the samples collected for regulatory purposes. These events are often unexplained. A possible source of such contamination is pollutant ingress into the distribution system from the surrounding soil and water. Such ingress can occur through the many apertures normally associated with leakage, at times when low or negative pressure conditions occur such as due to hydraulic transients (water hammer).This project will investigate the currently unknown potential for such contaminant ingress into potable water distribution systems by direct measurement utilising a specially developed laboratory facility. Laboratory studies are necessary to address difficulties associated with the short response duration of transient events and the costs, complexity and regulatory unacceptability of field studies. The experimental set up will be full scale and include surrounding ground conditions and a contaminant flow field (for example, an adjacent leaky sewer). Initial studies will investigate the influence of the characteristics of the transients (magnitude, duration etc.) while further studies will investigate the influence of aperture shape, geometry and location.The experiments will provide quantitative evidence of the conditions causing ingress which will be used to develop a new ingress model which, together with existing modelling tools, will enable quantification of the potential for contaminant ingress. The outputs from the new modelling approach will inform improvements to distribution system design, operation and maintenance, management of pollution incidents and ultimately result in improved drinking water quality.The project will be undertaken at the University of Sheffield, with advice and support from Professor Bryan Karney of Toronto University, an international expert in transient analysis and in collaboration with Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal for access to the best currently available relevant field data.
 
Title DVD and briefing paper 
Description Production of a DVD and briefing paper about Transients and Contaminant Ingress 
Type Of Art Film/Video/Animation 
Year Produced 2013 
Impact Impact on policy and practice of UK water companies 
 
Description Many UK water companies have built versions of the experimental facility developed for this research project to train and inform their operational staff. Training facilities with direct input from the research team include Severn Trent Water, Anglian Water, Yorkshire Water, Thames Water, Welsh Water, Northumbiran Water, and Scottish Water. Training and influence from this research has led to the 'calm networks' initiatives in the UK, which is seeing substantial improvements to levels of service from ageing water distribution infrastructure. Policy and practice relating to transients in water distribution systems have been influenced. For example practices associated with air valves and monitoring and management of large industrial users. Training has even included fire services and changed there practices for interacting with water distribution systems. Substantial media interest and coverage was generated coincident with publication of a major research paper from this research in 2015. This included a video produced by University of Sheffield media team, an interview on BBC radio Sheffield and articles in soft and hard copy media internationally.
First Year Of Impact 2010
Sector Environment,Other
Impact Types Societal,Economic

 
Description Influence on water company policy and practice relating to the operation and maintenance of water distribution systems
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Improved levels of serviceability (ensuring safe water quality) from ageing water distribution infrastructure.
 
Description Investigation into Transient Mitigation Methods
Amount £50,000 (GBP)
Organisation University of Sheffield 
Department Pennine Water Group
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 05/2012 
End 11/2013
 
Description Location of transients source (CASE studentship)
Amount £85,000 (GBP)
Organisation Yorkshire Water 
Sector Private
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2009 
End 10/2012
 
Description Studentship (DTG)
Amount £75,000 (GBP)
Organisation University of Sheffield 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 08/2014 
End 02/2018
 
Description Transient evaluation and bursting discs
Amount £196,000 (GBP)
Organisation Yorkshire Water 
Sector Private
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2011 
End 04/2013
 
Description UKWIR Drinking Water Quality Big Question
Amount £30,000 (GBP)
Organisation UK Water Industry Research Ltd 
Sector Private
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2016 
End 03/2017
 
Description University of Sheffield Studentship
Amount £60,000 (GBP)
Organisation University of Sheffield 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2012 
End 09/2015
 
Description Collaboration with Anglian Water 
Organisation Anglian Water Services
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution Anglian Water have been an active member of our steering committee
Collaborator Contribution project steering committee
Impact policy and practice in AW
Start Year 2009
 
Description Collaboration with Bruno Brunone and Silvia Meniconi at University of Perugia, Italy 
Organisation University of Perugia
Country Italy 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Collaboration with academics from the University of Perugia Italy. The result of the collaboration was an article published in an international journal and ongoing collaboration and publications
Collaborator Contribution exchange of ideas, thinking and laboratory data
Impact papers as listed
Start Year 2011
 
Description Collaboration with Bryan Karney, University of Toronto 
Organisation University of Toronto
Country Canada 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution During the project we have collaborated with Bryan Karney, Professor at the University of Toronto, the collaboration has included a number visits by Bryan to Sheffield, and return visits by Richard Collins and Joby Boxall to Toronto. Outcomes of this collaboration, beyond accelerating the project have included 1 peer reviewed journal and 1 conference paper.
Collaborator Contribution Exchange and generation of ideas and research direction
Impact papers as listed
Start Year 2008
 
Description Collaboration with US-EPA 
Organisation United States Environmental Protection Agency
Country United States 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Setting up of collaborations with the United States Environmental Protection Agency. USEPA having read one of our publications on contaminant ingress contacted us, with regards to collaborating. This is ongoing.
Collaborator Contribution Collaboration on experimental facilities and activities
Impact none
Start Year 2012
 
Description Collaboration with United Utilities 
Organisation United Utilities Group PLC
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution United Utilities have been an active member of the project steering committee
Collaborator Contribution project steering committee
Impact Policy and practice within UU
Start Year 2008
 
Description Collaboration with Yorkshire Water 
Organisation Yorkshire Water
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution Yorkshire Water have been an active member of the steering group for this project
Collaborator Contribution project steering committee
Impact policy and practice in YW
Start Year 2009
 
Description Collboration with Ecole Polytechnique Montreal 
Organisation École Polytechnique de Montréal
Country Canada 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Collaboration with Marie-Claude Besner and Gabrielle Ebacher, at the Ecole Polytechnique Montreal. This has been ongoing since the beginning of the project, there has been repeated exchange of ideas and the field data.
Collaborator Contribution Exchange of ideas and field data
Impact Collaborative papers, presentations and papers as listed
Start Year 2009
 
Title Contamiant Ingress Experimental Facility 
Description Large experimental facility for the investigation of intrusion due to transient and sustained low pressures. Has significant further use for the investigation of transients in distribution systems, and associated research 
Type Of Technology New/Improved Technique/Technology 
Year Produced 2010 
Impact The majority of UK water companies have now developed training versions of this facility and are reporting significant improvements in levels of serviceability as a result. 
 
Description 'Dynamic leakage: Physical study of the leak behaviour of longitudinal slits in MDPE pipe' paper presented at the Water Distribution Systems Analysis conference, Bari Italy 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact The presentation led to questions and discussion

The talk led to discussions for future collaboration
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description 'Experimental Quantification of Intrusion Due to Transients in Distribution Systems' paper pressented at Water Distribution Systems Analysis Conference, Bari Italy 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact talk led to discussions with international academic audience

International interest and awareness
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description 'Experimental proof of contaminant ingress into a leaking pipe during a transient event' paper presented at the 12th International Conference on Computing and Control for the Water Industry, Perugia, Italy 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact questions and discussion

this talk led to improved international collaboration
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description BBC radio sheffield interview about contaminant ingress 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact BBC radio Sheffield interview following press release and coverage for publication of major research paper.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description CID end of Project Dissemination Workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation workshop facilitator
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Dissemination Workshop Event, held at the University of Sheffield for the project Steeting Committee and the companies involved.

technology transfer
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Contaminant Ingress Website 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Project Website, Used to disseminate information on Intrusion and outputs of the project

Awareness of project and its findings
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity
 
Description DVD and briefing paper 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Production of a DVD and briefing paper about Transients and Contaminant Ingress.

Change in policy and practice
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Dissemination Event, Anglian Water, Clean Water Strategy Group 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation keynote/invited speaker
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Joby Boxall, gave a presentation at a specially convened meeting of Anglian Water's Clean Water Strategy Group, to discuss the output of the CID project.

Further research work with Anglian Water and development of their training facility
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Invited Seminar at University of Exeter 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact Joby Boxall gave a seminar at the University of Exeter on the findings of the CID project to date.

Invited seminar at University of Exeter

Increased awareness
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Invited Talk at University of Toronto 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Richard Collins gave an invited talk at the University of Toronto to members of the Faculty of Engineering.

increased international awareness and influenced thinking
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Invited Talk, Ecole Poly Technic Montreal 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Richard Collins and Joby Boxall gave invited talks to Ecole Poly Technique Montreal, on the CID project and wider UK Water industry to academics and industry representatives.

international policy and practice
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Invited Talk, Water Industry Forum 'A step change in water distribution for AMP6' 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Joby Boxall gave an invited talk to the Water Industry Forum (WIF) event 'A step change in water distribution for AMP6', where one of the topics discussed was the output of the CID project.

increased awareness and influence policy and practice
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Invited speaker IAHR-UK Section Technical Meeting 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation keynote/invited speaker
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Talk on the findings of CID project to the IAHR UK Section Technical Meeting.

raised awareness
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Invited speaker at 'Time Well Spent' event 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Invited Talk, Prof Joby Boxall, Contaminant Ingress (CID), January 2011, Time Well Spent (Public Engagement).

public interest and awareness
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Invited speaker, University of the Third Age 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Joby Boxall, gave a talk to the University of the third age on the outputs and relevance of the Contaminant Ingress Project.

Increased public awareness
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Invited talk at TU Delft 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Invited talk to faculty at TUDelft, Holland.

increased awareness and change in thinking
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Leakage Seminars in the University of West Indies 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Improved awareness and management of leakage in the West Indies.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Presenstation at Pressures Surges, 2012 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation paper presentation
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Sam Fox gave a presentation of his conference paper at the 11th International Conference on Pressure Surges, in Lisbon, Portugal, 2012.

Increased international interest and awareness
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Presentation at 3rd Biannual Water Networks Conference 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation paper presentation
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This talk outlined the aims of the Contaminant Ingress into Distribution Systems (CID) project; what we hope to achieve in the course of the project, how we will achieve it and how it will impact industry.

Stimulated thinking and awareness of issues
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
 
Description Presentation at 4th Biannual Water Networks Conference 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation paper presentation
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The presentation presented results of some initial experimental results from the CID project. The results described showed that intrusion was possible through soil driven by short term transients.

policy and practice
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Presentation at 5th Annual Water Networks Conference 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Presentation 'Contaminant Ingress and Transient Monitoring' at the 5th Water Networks Conference.

Technology transfer
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Presentation to WatNet Meeting 'Contamimant Ingress into water Distibution systems (CID)'' 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation paper presentation
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Joby Boxall gave a presentation to the 40th WatNet meeting at the University of Sheffield.

technology transfer
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Presentation to WatNet Meeting 'Transient Modelling, a new approach' 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation paper presentation
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Richard Collins gave a presentation on Transient modelling to the WatNet Meeting 40 organised at the University of Sheffield.

technology transfer
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Press coverage of Contaminant Ingress paper publication and video 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact The University of Sheffield made a press release and video coincident with major paper from the research, including a web page and video. This was picked up by local and international new media, including interview of BBC radio sheffield.

National
Daily Telegraph
Mystery stomach aches could be caused by leaking water pipes 08/06/2015
BBC News
Leaky pipes 'could pose health risk'
08/06/2015
Daily Mail Dodgy tummy that you can't explain? It could be because of leaking pipes that contaminate drinking water, experts warn 08/06/2015
International
Headline and Global News (HNGN), USA Leaky Pipes Can Allow Contaminants Such As Feces And Viruses Into Drinking Water 08/06/2015
US News and World Report Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: study
08/06/2015
Philly.com (USA) Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study 08/06/2015
Capital Bay
Dodgy tummy that you can't explain? It could be because of leaking pipes that contaminate drinking water, experts warn
08/06/2015
WXTX (USA)
Leaky pipes may mean tainted tap water
09/06/2015
Syndicated across the Fox News network and local stations in the USA, including:
KEYC Television
Media Monitoring Report
2
WSFX-TV
WSMV
Live 5 WCSC
WSAV
WSPA
KSLA
GTN News
WAFB
FOX 10 Phoenix
Fox Toledo
My Fox Boston
KPTM FOX 42
MyFoxPhilly.com
FOX 46 Carolinas
TurnTo10.com
Quincy Herald-Whig
Kuam News 8
12 News Now
ABC6.com
KXNet.com
KPTV.com
Nebraska TV
MyFoxTallahassee.com
FOX WTTG Washington
ABC News 4 Charleston
NBC4 Columbus
KSTC-TV
WBTV News
WQOW
Fox41.com
WKOW TV
WIS-TV
ABC 3340
KCTV 5
MyFox New York
WHLT.com
NBC 2
KWWL
KLTV 7
FOX 7 KTBC
WNKY.net
KXXV-TV
WBOC TV 16
WSET
WMCTV.com
3 WRCB-TV
WDAM-TV
FOX Carolina
WLTZ 38
WXTX Fox 54
9&10 News
Media Monitoring Report
3
KOKH Oklahoma City FOX 25
New Jersey Herald
Hawaii News Now
(NB - this list is not conclusive. Full links to each article can be provided if required)
Regional
Yorkshire Post Leaking pipes 'can let bugs into drinking water', researchers say 08/06/2015
Radio Sheffield Interview with for news bulletins on 08/06/2015
Radio Sheffield Interview with for Drive Time show 08/06/2015
Jersey Evening Post Leaking pipes 'contamination fear' 08/06/2015
North Devon Journal
Tap water could contain faecal matter due to leaking pipes, researchers find
08/06/2015
Bristol Post
Traces of faeces could be in your tap water
08/06/2015
Kent and Sussex Courier
Contaminated tap water could cause stomach upsets in Kent and Sussex
08/06/2015
The Cornishman
New research claims tap water could contain faecal matter
09/06/2015
Burton Mail
Poo in your tap water - find out why this might be the case
09/06/2015
Nottingham Post
Tummy problems in Nottinghamshire could be caused by contaminated tap water
09/06/2015
Nottingham Post
Severn Trent Water takes water hygiene 'extremely seriously'
10/06/2015
Lincolnshire Echo
Anglian Water: County's water is clean and safe after survey says faecal matter ...
10/06/2015
This is Guernsey
Leaking pipes 'contamination fear'
08/06/2015
Media Monitoring Report
4
Guernsey Press
Leaking pipes 'contamination fear'
08/06/2015
Jersey Evening Post
Leaking pipes 'contamination fear'
08/06/2015
Trade & Specialist
WWT (Water & Wastewater Treatment) Drinking water contaminant risk from leaking pipes
08/06/2015
PhysOrg Leaky pipes can allow contaminants into our drinking water
08/06/2015
Press News.org Leaky pipes can allow contaminants into our drinking water
08/06/2015
Laboratory Equipment
Leaky pipes are unsafe
08/06/2015
Click Green
Leaky pipes allow contaminants into drinking water system, study finds 08/06/2015
Medical Daily Drinking Water Can Become Contaminated With Viruses, Bacteria Through Leaky Pipes: Study
08/06/2015
Doctors Lounge Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study
18/06/2015
Health.com Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study
08/06/2015
RocketNews
Leaky pipes 'could pose health risk'
08/06/2015
Web Newswire
Leaky pipes can allow contaminants into our drinking water
09/06/2015
Forensic and Scientific Services (Queensland)
Leaky pipes 'could pose health risk'
08/06/2015
Media Monitoring Report
5
InteliHealth
Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study-June 08, 2015
08/06/2015
Medbroadcast
Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study
08/06/2015
The Health Cast
Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study
08/06/2015
Health on the Net (Switzerland)
Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study
08/06/2015
Doctors Lounge
Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study
08/06/2015
Drugs.com
Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study
08/06/2015
Health Day
Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study
08/06/2015
UK Nigeria Online
Tap water contaminated by leaking pipes could cause stomach upsets
08/06/2015
National Womens Health Information Center
Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water
08/06/2015
Health News
Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study
08/06/2015
Observatorio del Plástico
How aging water supply systems can be making us sick
08/06/2015
Health Finder
Leaky Pipes May Mean Tainted Tap Water: Study
08/06/2015
Benzinga.com
Leaky pipes can allow contaminants into our drinking water
08/06/2015
Big News Network
Dodgy tummy that you can't explain It could be because of leaking pipes that contaminate drinking water experts warn
08/06/2015
Media Monitoring Report
6
WebWire
Leaky pipes can allow contaminants into our drinking water
08/06/2015
Health Tips Articles
Leaky pipes 'could pose health risk'
08/06/2015
Environmental News Network
How aging water supply systems can be making us sick
08/06/2015
MyScience
Leaky pipes can allow contaminants into our drinking water
08/06/2015
Noodls
Leaky pipes can allow contaminants into our drinking water
08/06/2015
NewsRT.co.uk
Leaky pipes 'could pose health risk'
08/06/2015
Enquiries
Media:
Yorkshire Post
BBC Health
World Water
Waste Water Treatment (WWT)
Sheffield Star
National Swedish Broadcasting Corporation
Science Media Centre of Canada
BBC Radio Sheffield
Medical Daily
Romain Loury - freelance journalist
Stakeholder:
Water Quality Association (WQA), Illinois, USA
WQA is the international not-for-profit trade association serving the residential, commercial and industrial water quality improvement industry.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/news/nr/leaky-water-pipes-contaminants-drinking-water-1.470248
 
Description UK Water Network Meeting on Transients 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation keynote/invited speaker
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Richard Collins organised a meeting of the UK Water Network at the University of Sheffield. The focus of the meeting was on the existance and impact of transients in Distribtution Systems.

Change in policy and practice
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Yorkshire Water Evening Workshops, Contaminant Ingress 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation keynote/invited speaker
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Joby Boxall gave an invited speach at the Yorkshire Water Evening Workshop on 22nd of November.

Futher research work and change in practice in Yorkshire Water
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013