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Denver Water’s Response to Coronavirus

A message to our customers from our CEO/Manager

These are uncertain times in so many ways with news of the coronavirus changing nearly every day. But on behalf of the more than 1,100 Denver Water employees working hard for you every day, I’d like to reassure you about three simple facts.

  • Your water is safe to drink. Denver Water follows drinking water regulations that have been established to prevent waterborne pathogens, such as a virus like COVID-19, from contaminating drinking water. Please visit the Environmental Protection Agency’s webpage for more information on the Coronavirus and Drinking Water and Wastewater.
  • We will continue to deliver safe water to you. Denver Water has plans in place for handling emergencies of this type and routinely conducts exercises to prepare itself for a variety of events. Each division within the utility has Continuity of Operations plans to ensure our operations continue in an emergency.
  • We will assist you in this time of crisis. Denver Water knows our community’s response to COVID-19 will lead to economic hardships. That’s why Denver Water is not turning off water for past-due charges currently. We anticipate that turn-offs will resume in 2021. We are committed to helping our customers get back on track and have resources that can help, including:
    • Encouraging people to make regular monthly full or partial payments. Any payment is better than no payment. If you keep your balance below $100, you are not at risk of being turned off in the future. You can make full or partial payments on our website, by sending a check in the mail, by calling 1-800-556-0292 or visiting a King Soopers customer service desk. For all payment options, visit denverwater.org/Pay-My-Bill.
    • We also partner with the Mile High United Way 2-1-1 Help Center, which is a multilingual, confidential service connecting our community to vital resources. Find out if you qualify for hardship assistance by dialing 211, texting your ZIP code to 898-211 or visiting 211Colorado.org.

Our top priority to is to keep employees, partners, contractors and vendors safe and healthy so we can continue to serve our customers. We are making numerous changes to accomplish this including:

  • Travel restrictions and virtual participation in public and vendor meetings for our employees.
  • Practicing social distancing guidelines for employees by providing alternative work locations.
  • Requiring employees to wear masks at the work site. 
  • Increased cleaning and disinfection at our many work areas.
  • Closing our Administration Building. See more details on customer interaction here.
  • Postponement of public tours indefinitely.
  • Suspending water trailer availability for community events indefinitely.

Additionally, operating a water system during COVID-19 created some positive changes, including enhanced efforts to minimize the duration of water outages on all of the work we do on our system. Those outages range from 30 minutes to eight hours. Except in cases of emergency repairs, if a water outage is necessary for a project, we will now notify you at least 24 hours in advance and provide you with tips for how to minimize the impact.

Denver Water has a team of industry experts in Emergency Management, Safety and Security, Water Quality and Operations who have been actively tracking coronavirus, reviewing data as conditions shift, and taking steps to prepare for potential impacts to Denver Water. We are working daily with public health partners to continue monitoring. We will do everything necessary to fulfill our responsibility to deliver clean, safe and reliable water to 1.5 million people.

We will also continue to communicate with you when there is important news. Please be safe.

Sincerely,

Jim Lochhead
Denver Water CEO/Manager

July 16 statement clarifying outbreak facility reports

Since March, Denver Water has aggressively worked to go above and beyond the rules and regulations set by the public health community to keep employees, partners, contractors and the community safe and healthy from COVID-19 so we can continue to serve a safe and reliable drinking water supply to the Denver metro area.

On July 15, Denver Water was listed on CDPHE’s outbreak facility list before immediately being removed after more clarification on employee cases was reported to the state.

Ultimately, we believe that one employee contracting COVID-19 is one too many. We also are aware that despite the many rules and guidelines in place, with more than 1,100 employees spanning 12 different counties, we are not immune to this pandemic.

In order to meet our responsibility to deliver safe and reliable drinking water, we have many employees who must work in critical facilities, on crews and directly with customers. In addition to complying with state and local guidelines, we have implemented many other measures to protect both our employees and our customers.

These measures include teleworking, altering shifts to limit contact between employees, emergency administrative leave for employees with symptoms, increased cleaning and hand-washing, required health screening forms for any employee reporting to a facility or job site, and social distancing and mandatory mask wearing while at work.

Declaración sobre el Coronavirus

Una carta a nuestros clientes de parte de nuestro director ejecutivo/gerente

Hay mucha incertidumbre durante este tiempo con noticias del coronavirus cambiando casi todos los días. Pero en nombre de los más de 1,100 empleados de Denver Water que trabajan arduamente para ustedes todos los días, me gustaría proveer un poco de seguridad sobre tres cosas básicas.

  • El agua que toma es segura y saludable. Denver Water sigue las normas de agua potable que se han establecido para evitar que los patógenos transmitidos por el agua, como el virus COVID-19, contaminen el agua potable. Visite la página web de la EPA para obtener más información sobre el Coronavirus y el agua potable y las aguas residuales (en inglés).
  • Continuaremos entregando agua segura y saludable. Denver Water tiene planes establecidos para manejar emergencias de este tipo y realiza ejercicios para prepararnos para una variedad de eventos. Cada división dentro de la empresa de servicio público tiene planes para garantizar que nuestras operaciones continúen en caso de emergencia.
  • Ayudaremos a nuestros clientes durante este tiempo de crisis. Denver Water reconoce que la respuesta necesaria de nuestra comunidad al COVID-19 resultará en dificultades económicas. Por lo que Denver Water ha suspendido todos los cortes de agua debido a pagos atrasados para garantizar que todos los clientes tengan acceso a este recurso vital.
    • Cualquier cliente que esté preocupado por no poder pagar su factura debe comunicarse con el equipo de Atención al cliente de Denver Water al 303-893-2444, de lunes a viernes, de 7:30 a.m. a 5:30 p.m. El equipo de Atención al cliente tiene experiencia en trabajar con clientes para evaluar opciones, como planes de pago o proveer al cliente con recursos adicionales, incluido el programa de Asistencia temporal de renta y servicios públicos de Denver.
    • Además, Denver Water limitará los cortes de agua solo durante emergencias y cuenta con procesos para restaurar el agua lo más rápido posible. Los proyectos de rutina que requieren interrupciones de agua temporales para más de una residencia se suspenderán para garantizar un servicio continuo de agua con el fin de proteger la seguridad y el bienestar de los empleados, clientes y la comunidad.

Nuestra prioridad es la salud y seguridad de empleados, socios, contratistas y proveedores para poder seguir sirviendo a nuestros clientes. Estamos haciendo varios cambios para lograr esto. Los cambios incluyen:

  • Restricciones a viajes y aumento en participación virtual durante reuniones públicas de parte de nuestros empleados.
  • Participar en distanciamiento social al cambiar ubicaciones de trabajo de nuestros empleados. 
  • Aumentar la limpieza y desinfección en nuestras áreas de trabajo.
  • Cerrar nuestras oficinas al público y posponer visitas a nuestras instalaciones.
  • Cerrar el acceso a áreas de excursión y campamento en las presas de Antero, Gross y Williams Fork indefinidamente. 
  • Cerrar acceso a Wateron Canyon al publico indefinidamente.

Denver Water cuenta con un equipo de expertos de la industria en relación con el manejo de emergencias, seguridad y protección quienes han estado observando cercanamente el coronavirus desde enero, revisando información en cuanto cambian las condiciones y tomando medidas para prepararse para posibles impactos a Denver Water. Estamos trabajando diariamente con organizaciones de salud pública para continuar monitoreando la situación. Haremos lo necesario para seguir entregando agua potable, limpia y saludable a 1.5 millones de personas.

También nos comunicaremos con ustedes cuando tengamos noticias importantes sobre su agua. Espero que se encuentren bien.

Sinceramente,

Jim Lochhead
Director ejecutivo/Gerente de Denver Water.