Ensuring water conservation and compliance: How Southern Water transformed pollution monitoring with FYLD

  • 44,000

    AI powered site assessments

  • 60,000

    remote interventions from managers and operational control centres

  • 1,600

    AI prompted pollution investigations

  • Industry


  • Deployment size

    1,000 users

  • Overview

    Leading provider of water and wastewater services for Kent, Sussex, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight

The challenge

Water utility providers around the world are under unprecedented pressure to achieve sustainability targets and adhere to governing regulations. The significant increase in media and public focus on environmental performance has put the whole sector under the spotlight. Rapidly increasing population sizes coupled with ageing infrastructure has led to significant challenges for water utility providers, who must balance customer demands with safeguarding precious water resources.

Utility providers may be overwhelmed with large amounts of data on pollution incidents which makes it challenging to know where to focus their attention first.

While serving their communities with clean drinking water and managing wastewater, these utilities must also comply with strict regulations enforced by governing bodies to ensure the effective management of this limited resource.

Consider the challenge for our partner Southern Water in the UK. Water utility providers in this area were under severe pressure to reduce the 300,000 sewage spills reported in 2022, and not meeting these goals could lead to hefty fines.

Committed to improving environmental performance, Southern Water engaged with FYLD in September 2022. Southern Water also sought safety outcomes – they would not prioritise environmental performance and increased work output at the expense of the safety of their workers.

Southern Water implemented a safety and operational transformation plan focused on enhancing real-time operational visibility and overhauling existing safety and operational practices to improve performance. A key driver of the engagement was to provide operational fieldworkers, the key first responders in pollution and environmental incidents, the tools and support to safely respond to minimise environmental impact.

The Solution

Southern Water partnered with FYLD to deliver a bespoke solution. They adopted FYLD’s award-winning AI-powered site assessments, helping field-based operatives assess site conditions through computer vision and AI. Site teams were alerted to pollution risks through FYLD’s AI model, which prompted pollution investigations. Data collected was pushed directly into the Operational Control Centre and management team – ensuring critical operational data was available in real-time to support critical decision making.

In only three months, Southern Water saw outstanding results. Using FYLD’s AI insights delivered a marked improvement in operational performance, and has led to market-leading transparency with the regulator regarding pollution incidents. FYLD has been deployed by more than 1,000 field workers who are out on the front line responding to critical operational incidents to keep water and wastewater services flowing.

Southern Water is benefitting from:

  • AI identifying pollution risks on-site, notifying managers and control teams with automatic push notifications through the FYLD platform
  • Remote interventions from control teams to mitigate the severity of pollution events, or prevent them entirely
  • Streamlined reporting to the regulator and Environment Agency (EA) in the event of a pollution event
  • Enhanced crude sampling reporting through FYLD to collect general operational data, helping benchmark water quality and identify pollution events

Proven impacts

Real-time visibility

  • Over 16,000 AI-prompted pollution investigations delivered through FYLD, empowering control centres with real-time visibility

Smart notifications

  • Over 60,000 remote interventions from managers and operational control centres – using smart notifications to intervene before problems and incidents arise

Safer operations

  • Over 44,000 AI-powered site assessments, helping teams identify real-time safety and process risk in real time

Outcomes for Southern Water

  • Southern Water’s YTD pollution trend is trending down, with FYLD evidence and real-time visibility a contributor to the performance transformation
  • Southern Water’s safety record is significantly improving, with lost-time to injuries rates trending down
Southern Water’s YTD pollution trend is trending down, with FYLD evidencing and real-time visibility a contributor to the performance transformation. Southern Water’s safety record is significantly improving, with lost-time injury rate trending down.

“FYLD is vital in our mission to elevate standards in pollution management at Southern Water. The real-time risk assessments, fortified by AI-powered insights, and seamless communication, have driven a marked shift in how we perceive and tackle pollution incidents. The transparency and efficiency with which we now report to regulators has been improved significantly.

“FYLD is not just an enhancement; it’s an enabler. It is helping Southern Water to improve safety, drive operational improvements, and ultimately deliver better service to our customers.”

Alex Saunders

Head of Wastewater Networks

FYLD in 15

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