October 26, 2022

Is Emergency Power Necessary in Water Treatment Facilities?


Backup generators provide unlimited, automatic power that keeps things running during blackouts. They apply to almost every industry present but are required more in some sectors than others today. 

A water treatment plant is among the places that require a regular power supply, as an outage could disrupt millions of lives. With severe power outages predicted to hit America in the future, this post explains why emergency power is a lifeline for water treatment facilities.

How Water Treatment Plants Work

Although the earth contains 71% water, only a tiny fraction can be purified to become drinkable. According to the Safe Water Drinking Act guidelines, water from lakes, rivers, and artificial reservoirs can only undergo treatment at designated water treatment facilities.

The goal of this treatment is to eliminate bacteria, algae, fungi, minerals, and any other potentially harmful substances. It follows the sequence below.

  • Pre-Chlorination: Adding chlorine to the water collection systems to control algae and halt further biological growth.
  • Aeration: Passing large volumes of air through the water to remove small manganese particles and dissolved iron in the water.
  • Coagulation for Flocculation: Pre-treatment involves rapid sand filtration and sedimentation to expel suspended or dissolved compounds from water.
  • Sedimentation: Using sedimentation tanks to get rid of larger solids that float and settle on water.
  • Filtration: Water goes through a filtration system to remove any suspended particles. There are no solid compounds left after this process.
  • Disinfection: Chemical disinfectants such as chlorine and chloramines are added to water to kill off any viruses, bacteria, and parasites.

Why Emergency Power is Important in Water Treatment

Water treatment requires a lot of power to see through from start to finish successfully. If the power in a treatment plant fails and there is no backup generator, the following might occur:

No Water Distribution

In a standard setting, large electric pumps pressurize the treated water towards the discharge pipe, from where it's channeled to industrial and residential facilities. If there's a power failure, the electric pump can't put pressure on the system for water distribution to occur. Such a situation could have several consequences that include:

  • No water for industrial use
  • Lack of water for cleaning, cooking, bathing, or drinking
  • Not enough water for firefighters
  • No water for emergencies like fire

Security Concerns

Water treatment plants rely on electricity for security as much as water supply. Most of these facilities contain surveillance systems to protect against theft or terrorism. If power fails without a backup power source, it could leave the premises open to many forms of danger.


This is the worst consequence of a lack of emergency power in a water treatment plant, as it could lead to a shutdown. Power failure for an extended period without a backup generator renders the utility company unable to distribute water, meaning they won't make enough money for the entire time.

Key Takeaways

Standby generators are the best solution for power outages in water treatment plants. Barring any physical disruption, these machines can run uninterrupted on diesel or natural gas alone for an extended period. Most generators can be remotely monitored so that you can check their status at any time through your smart device.

They also offer power surge protection and can operate in any weather condition, so that you won't worry about their storage. You can keep things running smoothly during water treatment even without regular electricity using backup generators. 

At Power System Services, We offer a wide range of generators with specific features based on your power needs. Our experts can guide you through the available backup generators suitable for a water treatment facility. Contact us today for more information on our products.