Emergency Planning Tools

The Office of Drinking Water provides a variety of planning tools to help waterworks owners plan for and respond to emergencies. Planning tools consist of guide books (written in question and answer format) and a variety of tools such as brochures for consumer information, planning worksheets, or application forms.

15 Easy Ways to Make Your Utility Better Prepared for Emergencies

Emergency Management Plans for Extended Power Outages


Hurricanes and Other Natural Disasters

Communicating With Your Waterworks Customers

What You Need to Know About Generators – Is Your Waterworks Prepared?

Hurricane Incident Checklist (EPA)

Storm Surge Inundation and Hurricane Strike Frequency Map (EPA)

Fed FUNDS – Find Funding (EPA)

Flood Resilience Guide (EPA)

Hurricane Preparedness (USEPA)

Pre-Hurricane Preparation (USEPA)

Post- Hurricane Response (USEPA)

Boil Water Advisories

Because of the reliability of modern weather forecasting, hurricanes no longer strike without warning. Other natural disasters, such as winter ice storms or flooding from rapidly developing summer storms, can damage waterworks with little warning. If your waterworks has sustained a prolonged power outage leading to loss of water pressure, service line breaks, or flooding of the well, treatment units, or storage tanks, you should have a plan to notify customers of steps to take to make sure water is safe to drink. This guide will help you plan and prepare for quick communication with customers in the event that water quality is impaired.


Many of these files require the free Adobe Acrobat Reader .

Guidance on Main Break Types and Responses – English (pdf)

FEMA Resource Typing Manual – English (pdf)

Boil Water Advisory During Hurricanes and Other Natural Disasters: A Guide for Small Waterworks (18 pages) – English (pdf)

Generic Boil Water Notice – English (pdf) | Spanish (pdf)

Generic Do Not Use Notice – English (pdf) | Spanish (pdf)

Boil Water Notices Brochure – English (pdf) | Spanish (coming soon)

Customizable Boil Water Notice – English (doc) | Spanish

Drinking Water Problem Corrected – English (doc) | Spanish (coming soon)

Situation Report Form – English (doc)

Additional planning resources:

VDH – Emergency Preparedness & Response (EP&R)

Virginia Water/Wastewater Agency Response Network (VA WARN)

Ready Virginia

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

National Weather Service

Miss Utility of Virginia