Electricity and Water Safety Standards for Nauru Utilities Corporation


The Asian Development Bank provided the Nauru Utilities Authority (NUA) (formerly Nauru Utilities Corporation) with technical assistance for the establishment of safety standards, which was provided by IT Power (Australia), and the findings of the consultancy are provided in this report. The NUA currently uses AS/NZS 3000:2007 - The Wiring Rules, as its standard for electricity transmission and distribution.  This standard is used throughout utilities in the South Pacific and its use by NUA is in line with Nauru's neighbours. However, despite the NUA nominally following AS/NZS 3000, the low level of training of many of its staff and the lack of regulatory oversight mean that installations and working methods may not be compliant with the standard. Furthermore, the adoption of AS/NZS 3000 is not universal across the private sector, leading to varying quality of installations. A simplified version of AS/NZS 3000:2007 has been attached to this report, to act as a quick reference guide for untrained utilities personnel. Water is produced by reverse-osmosis machines at the NUA, stored in concrete tanks, and trucked to customers' water tanks by the NUA or by a private company.

The NUA nominally abides by the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines 6 (2004) with the Ministry of Health conducting testing of the drinking water. The staff at the NUA have limited safety equipment (chlorine dispensing equipment for the tanker) and lack the training to use it. Sample Standard Operating Procedures for water quality monitoring have been attached to this report. As a next step to this consultancy, training for the electricity staff (specifically the Line Gang, the unit at the NUA responsible for the high-voltage transmission network) and water storage team at the utility is recommended. Standards alone will not improve the safety of the electricity and water sectors in Nauru; the staff who are to implement the standards must be adequately trained.