Office of Safety and Security
The requirements of Public Law 107-188, June 12,2002 titled “Public Health Security and Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002 (a.k.a. Bioterrorism Act)” are managed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The public law required water utilities to perform a vulnerability assessment of drinking water facilities and then to prepare an emergency response plan, results of both to be filed with the EPA.
The City’s Vulnerability Assessment identified needs for enhanced security measures. The City established the Division of Security and Safety whose mission is to provide a secure and safe working environment for all DWM employees, protect the drinking water source, treatment, storage and distribution facilities, protect the environment through secure and safe reclamation facilities and plan for rapid, effective emergency response to industrial accidents, man-made or natural catastrophes including contamination and attack. This mission also includes planning and implementation of the mandates of Public Law 107, including vulnerability assessments, corrective action and emergency response planning. The Division is also responsible for strategic planning for security issues and capital financing of recommended improvements, and other projects designed to empower the citizens of Atlanta, water consumers, to participate in the protection of assets located within neighborhoods. This mission is consistent with EPA guidelines on water security.
Atlanta-Fulton County Emergency Management Agency (AFCEMA)
The Atlanta-Fulton County Emergency Management Agency website
There are four units that comprise the Office of Safety & Security:
Emergency Response Unit
The Department of Watershed Management, Emergency Response Unit is responsible for providing disaster, mitigation, and technical assistance to DWM employees in the areas of planning, training, preparedness programs, and the implementation of emergency operations to minimize the harmful consequences of emergency incidents. The Emergency Response Unit is the DWM staff proponent for coordinating emergency response, recovery, and mitigation operations during emergencies and disasters. This unit ensures that DWM preparedness, response, and recovery plans reflect “best practices” and are consistent with local , state, and federal planning guidelines.
The mission of the Safety Unit and its key role is to help DWM employees go home as safe and as healthy as they arrived. This is accomplished by promoting safe work practices that do not harm the environment, encouraging employees to comply with any and all rules and regulations pertaining to occupational health and safety and the environment; and by protecting DWM resources through sound administration of the City of Atlanta. The Safety Unit promotes responsibility and accountability by providing quality customer service to everyone. Our responsibility is to ensure safe and healthy work environments, instruction to employee’s through a variety of safety training classes relative to job functions, and to enforce City Ordinances and DWM policies and procedures. This mission is achieved when the workplace is freed of recognized hazards, injuries, and full compliance with environmental and workplace safety regulations that are consistently maintained. The Safety Unit’s goals are to simply prevent loss of life and property, protect employees, public, visitors and property during hazardous and life threatening incidents. We wish to provide efficient and courteous response in emergency situations and to promote life and safety through awareness and education.
The Department of Watershed Management, Office of Safety & Security, comprise of highly dedicated and committed Safety and Security professionals that provide a secure and safe environment for DWM personnel and visitors. DWM Security Unit proactively conducts patrols at twenty-eight Watershed critical infrastructure facilities to control access, deter theft, security violations, investigates breaches of security or hazards that might jeopardize or impact operations and facilities.
The DWM Security Unit is reinforced by Thorpe Security Contract personnel that physically control the access 24/7 for eleven DWM facilities and patrol over forty-five remote facilities daily.
DWM Security Unit and Thorpe Security personnel support the Department of Watershed Management strategic critical success factors of providing quality service to employees and visitors with continuous customer service through loss prevention, identification, and resolution of conditions that may threaten the success of DWM operations. In addition, DWM security personnel promote safety and security initiatives through education, innovation, teamwork and partnership to ensure a safe working environment.
The Department of Watershed Management Security Unit consistently upholds the highest standards of excellence and integrity while promoting safety, exception customer service, environmental stewardship and compliance and efficiency.
The Office of Safety and Security Investigations Unit acts as an impartial fact finder for the Commissioner of the Department of Watershed Management and is responsible for timely, probative, and accurate investigations. The Unit also provides assistance to complainants, making every effort to carefully screen each complaint to determine the appropriate action and refer individuals to the proper organization to address concerns.
Types of Investigations
– Violations of Section 154-70(d) of the City Ordinance: Theft of Water Service through illegal consumption, meter tampering, illegal connection by an employee/civilian, etc.
Violations of this Code Section shall subject the Violator to court penalties up to $1000 per violation plus restitution costs, and/or up to 180 days (6 months) in jail.
– Underground Utility Damage Hit – Call 811 before you dig.
– Watershed Employee/Ethics
– Risk Management/Loss Prevention
The Unit is also responsible for the administration of employee terminations, the maintenance of key and lock inventory, and the facilitation of training to Watershed Employees (workplace violence, drug & alcohol awareness, etc).
Submit a Investigation Request
If you would like to submit a complaint/request for investigation, please send the document(s) below to: