8/31/2020  Birmingham Water Works to Resume Collections on Delinquent Accounts

Customers are asked to bring accounts current to avoid service interruption

BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA (August 31, 2020) — Beginning October 12, 2020, Birmingham Water Works Board (BWWB) will reinforce its collection process on past due accounts. Water shutoffs on delinquent accounts were suspended back in March to ensure all customers’ access to clean water during the pandemic of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Customers are encouraged to make payment arrangements with Customer Service staff if they are unable to bring their account current before this specified date.
“We made the decision to halt water shut-offs early on in the pandemic during a time where everyone was trying to come to grips with the impacts of the virus,” says BWWB Spokesman Rick Jackson. “Today, more than 12,000 accounts are delinquent which make up more than seven million dollars.”
The move to restart normal business practices comes as BWWB prepares to present a budget for FY 2021 later this year.
“Continuing to not collect on these delinquent accounts could eventually put the utility in a position to make hard fiscal decisions that could trickle down to the pockets of our customers; we have a fiduciary responsibility to ratepayers,” Jackson adds.
Customer Service can be reached at (205) 244-4000 Monday through Friday from 7am-6pm.

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7/7/2020 Birmingham Water Works to Close Payment Center

Safety measure put in place due to rising COVID-19 cases
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (July 7, 2020)— Birmingham Water Works has constantly monitored developments surrounding COVID-19 which now consist of a continual surge in positive cases of the virus throughout Jefferson County, according to medical professionals. In an effort to protect our employees, customers, and families, Birmingham Water Works is closing the Payment Center lobby at the close of business July 7, 2020, until further notice.
Customers are still encouraged to make payments via:
❖ Online https://web.bwwb.org/myaccount
❖ Drive-thru Monday-Friday 8am-5pm
❖ Payment drop box
❖ Phone line 1-877-565-3802
❖ Mail P.O. Box 830269 Birmingham, AL 35283-0269
For assistance with Customer Service, our agents are available Monday-Friday from 7am-5pm at (205) 244-4000.

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4/30/2020 Birmingham Water Works Board Reopens Payment Center on May 4

Social Distancing Measures Include Customer Spacing and Face Covering Requirements

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (April 30, 2020) — The Birmingham Water Works Board (BWWB) will open its Payment Center on a limited basis starting May 4 to accept bill payments in person.  In accordance with state and local social distancing measures related to the coronavirus (COVID-19), BWWB will limit lobby occupancy to nine customers, with customers required to stand six feet apart. BWWB will also require customers and employees to wear face coverings per city ordinance passed on April 28. The drive-thru will continue regular operations. 
Due to occupancy and social distancing limitations, BWWB encourages customers to submit payments via phone or web: https://www.bwwb.org/paymybill. Customer service inquiries, including leak reports, will be handled via phone at 205-244-4000 or online at http://bwwb.org/reportaproblem.
The Main Office will remain closed to the public, customers can continue to conduct business with BWWB via phone. Additional measures to reopen public-facing functions are under development and will be announced at a later date. BWWB will continue to suspend disconnections on delinquent bills to ensure that customers can practice good hygiene.

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3/25/2020 Birmingham Water Works Closes Drive-thru Until Further Notice

Closure to support public staying home during pandemic
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (March 25, 2020)- In accordance with the City of Birmingham’s ‘shelter in place’ ordinance that went into effect March 24,2020, Birmingham Water Works supports the public staying home unless leaving for essential reasons and will no longer take payments via the drive-thru from March 26th until further notice. Payments can still be made via phone at 877-565-3802, by mail at PO Box 830269 Birmingham, AL 35283 or online: www.bwwb.org/myaccount

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3/16/2020 BWWB Temporarily Closes Payment Center Lobby & Main Office

● Lobby Closed from March 17 until April 6
● Drive-Through Will Remain Open

In the interest of the safety of our customers and employees and in accordance with guidelines set forth by the Centers for Disease Control, Birmingham Water Works Board (BWWB) is modifying normal operations of its Payment Center and Main Office to help slow the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
Starting Tuesday, March 17th, BWWB will close the lobby of its Payment Center and Main Administrative Building, with normal hours resuming April 6th.
During this time, BWWB will continue to accept in-person bill payments via the drive-thru and encourages customers to consider submitting payments via phone or web: https://www.bwwb.org/paymybill.
Leaks can also be reported online at: http://bwwb.org/reportaproblem

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3/11/2020 Birmingham Water Works to Halt Service Disconnections due to Coronavirus

Preventative measure against spreading the virus goes into effect immediately

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (March 11, 2020)- Effective immediately, Birmingham Water Works (BWW) is temporarily suspending collections on delinquent accounts to ensure all customers have access to clean water during the pandemic of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19), until further notice. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) along with several medical professionals are urging the public to take precautions to help prevent the spread of the virus, which includes proper hygiene practices.

“We’re being told that one of the main preventive measures we need to take right now is constant hand washing,” says BWW Spokesperson Rick Jackson. “We do not want any of our customers or those visiting the area to feel uneasy about being properly prepared when it comes to safeguarding their families due to the fact that they can’t afford to pay their water bill at the moment.”

The utility is joining the efforts of other government agencies and municipalities across the nation, including the City of Birmingham which makes up approximately 44 percent of the total customer accounts with majority living at or below poverty level. “We appreciate the stance Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin has already taken on this matter, and we’d like to be good stewards of the community by bringing some relief to thousands of people during this time,” says BWW General Manager Michael Johnson.

Although collections are temporarily suspended, customers are still responsible for the consumption used over time and are urged to continue making payments on their account.

Birmingham Water Works officials would also like to ensure the public that there is currently no threat of Coronavirus disease contamination in the water supply.   

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BWWB Q&A:

COVID-19 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2)

 

Can I catch COVID-19 from drinking water?

There is no evidence that the COVID-19 virus is transmitted by drinking water. The current evidence is that the COVID-19 virus is most likely transmitted from person-to-person by sneezing and coughing.

Drinking water provided by Birmingham Water Works Board is high quality, is well treated using filtration and chlorine disinfection, and is tested almost continually by our state-of-the-art laboratory. There is no evidence that drinking water will be affected by coronavirus.

 

Should I buy bottled water or store drinking water?

There is no need to buy bottled water for drinking. Safe, clean tap water will continue to be supplied directly to your home or business every day by Birmingham Water Works Board.

 

How is Birmingham Water Works Board protecting the water supply?

We have stringent hygiene measures in place at our water treatment plants. In addition, there is almost no human contact in the process of treating water for drinking.

The water treatment and disinfection processes utilized by Birmingham Water Works Board, including use of chlorine, are highly effective. We meet or exceed established treatment regulations from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) to prevent waterborne pathogens such as viruses from contaminating drinking water and remove or kill pathogens before they reach the tap.

Birmingham Water Works Board is in frequent contact with government agencies and industry professionals to monitor and understand the health impact of COVID-19 and to stay updated on the very latest information.

 

What if workers are quarantined at home, will water still be supplied?

Water is an essential service and Birmingham Water Works Board is well prepared to manage our response to COVID-19. We have existing emergency response plans and are continuing to update them in response to the most current available information.

Our water treatment plants are secure, have back up power and require few staff to operate them. We will ensure that multiple staff are able to operate water treatment plants and water supply systems so that even if several people are on leave for any reason, drinking water can still be safely and reliably supplied.

Best practices for protecting the occupational health of workers continue to be maintained and Birmingham Water Works Board is committed to ensuring that the same exceptional drinking water our customers expect is delivered uninterrupted.

 

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