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The original item was published from 10/24/2013 11:03:00 AM to 12/2/2013 12:05:01 AM.

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Posted on: October 24, 2013



CONTACT: Mike McGill
(910) 332-6704
After Hours: (910) 622-8472

WILMINGTON, NC, October 24, 2013: The Cape Fear Public Utility Authority (CFPUA) is pleased to announce it has been selected as the 2013 winner of the North Carolina Water Works Association and Water Environment Association’s (NCAWWA-WEA) Large Utility Disaster Preparedness Award. CFPUA was honored with the award, in part, because it made improvements in every single category of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s objectives for its National Incident Management Systems (NIMS). The improvements included increased Incident Command System training and participation in multiple comprehensive tabletop exercises both inside and outside the organization. Following one of the exercises, CFPUA turned to the local office of the National Weather Service for the latest in storm surge and inundation models and plotted them against all of the Authority’s infrastructure. As a result, CFPUA gained the ability to create real-time maps of storm surge during future events to determine which parts of its infrastructure will be impacted the most. This will allow the Authority to pre-stage equipment and personnel for timely response, as well as assist it after a storm with priority and damage assessments.

“We supply nearly 200,000 people with their drinking water from a coastal location susceptible to tropical weather. Because of this, CFPUA must pay particular attention to being as ready as we can be for our customers when disaster strikes,” said Jim Flechtner, Interim Executive Director. “We are proud to be thought of as an industry leader in emergency preparedness across the state.”

This is the second time in its five-year history that CFPUA has won this award from NCAWWA-WEA; it was previously honored in 2010. Formed in 1928, NC AWWA-WEA is a volunteer association with more than 3,000 members in North Carolina representing municipal and private utilities, consulting engineering firms, government agencies, companies who provide equipment and supplies to the industry and representatives of academia who teach and conduct water and wastewater-related research. As a result of its continued leadership in the area of emergency preparedness, CFPUA staff has been called on to present their best practices to NCAWWA-WEA and other utilities across the state.

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Cape Fear Public Utility Authority (CFPUA) was formed by the City of Wilmington and New Hanover County to combine their water and sewer operations. It began operations on July 1, 2008. Today, the Authority serves more than 65,000 water customer accounts and more than 63,000 wastewater customer accounts. It oversees more than 1,000 miles of water distribution mains and nearly 1,000 miles of sewer mains. For more information, visit or contact CFPUA’s Communications staff at

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