PDA of the DLF Mobile Computing Application is being used to record the details of sewer cleansing operation at site
The Drainage Services Department (DSD) has achieved cumulative EPP savings of 3.5% of recurrent baseline expenditure by 2001-02. This would not have been possible without the enthusiasm and concerted effort of all staff.

DSD provides services in two areas, which are to investigate, plan, design, construct, operate and maintain stormwater drainage and sewerage systems. Productivity enhancement has been achieved through various measures including -

* deletion of 56 posts, representing about 2.6% of the departmental establishment, through natural wastage or staff redeployment, without any staff redundancy problems;
* redeployment of exiting staff resources to new facilities to be put into operation by DSD;
* negotiation for better contract rates on purchase of stores and equipment;
* outsourcing of minor civil works as well as operation and maintenance of some drainage and sewage plants and equipment to contractors or consultants;
* modification of the operation of the dewatering equipment at the Sha Tin, Shek Wu Hui, Yuen Long and Tai Po Sewage Treatment Works; and

further enhancement of the efficiency of the maintenance resources through re-scheduling of works and systematic analysis of the conditions of drains and sewers with the aid of computerised system.

Among the above measures, we would like to share our experience in two areas - savings in chemical cost, and enhancement of the Drainage Complaints Information System with mobile computing technology.

Savings in Chemical Cost
In the major secondary treatment works, considerable amount of chemicals, namely polymer and ferric chloride, is used in dewatering sewage sludge to the desired dryness before disposal. One of the EPP measures is to save chemical cost without sacrificing the dryness of the sludge cake produced. This is achieved by employing an enhanced sampling/analysis programme to optimise the dosage of chemicals in the dewatering process. With this measure, the dosage of chemicals can be reduced in Shatin, Shek Wu Hui, Yuen Long and Tai Po Sewage Treatment Works, leading to an annual saving of about $7 million in chemical cost.

Enhancement of the Drainage Complaints Information System with mobile computing technology
With the assistance of the Information Technology and Services Department, a Drainage Complaints Information System (DCIS) was developed in 1997 to facilitate the handling of sewer and drain blockages. This system has enabled DSD to accurately record all job details and to rapidly deploy DSD's Direct Labour Force (DLF) and the necessary plant resources to clear the blockages. DSD can also use the data collected for detailed analysis of the deficiencies in the drainage system. It enables DSD to accurately identify the blackspots of blockages such that more effective preventive maintenance works can be organised. Since introduction of the DCIS, the number of complaints against sewer and drain blockage has dropped noticeably in the past few years.

In 2001, DSD further enhanced the DCIS by integrating the system with the mobile computing technology. With a Personal Digital Assistant (PDA), the DLF sewer staff can receive work orders from the DCIS, capture work results and site photos on-spot, and upload all captured data to the DCIS by a simple operation when returning to the depot. This greatly improves the efficiency in processing complaints against sewer and drain blockages and facilitates monitoring of work progress.

In short, advancement in IT technology has helped DSD to improve the service to the public and enhanced the efficiencies of the maintenance works and resources distribution through better planning and scheduling of activities.

EPP is achieved by implementing enhanced sampling / analysis programme

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