Washington "WARN"

WARN: Utilities Helping Utilities

What is WARN?

WARN is a Water/Wastewater Agency Response Network that allows water and wastewater systems to receive rapid mutual aid and assistance from other systems during an emergency. Utilities sign the WARN standard agreement, which allows them to share resources with other Washington systems that have signed the agreement. For more information, visit the WAWARN website.

How does a utility get assistance during an emergency?

  • The WARN member who needs help identifies the resources needed to respond.
  • The WARN member can either contact a fellow WARN member who has the necessary resources directly, or use a state-specific process for requesting aid.

Are member utilities required to respond and send resources?

There is no obligation to respond. It is up to the lending utility to determine if resources are available.

What role does the agreement play?

Articles in the WARN agreement govern the process and procedure for giving and receiving assistance during an emergency. The agreement covers issues such as requesting assistance, giving assistance, reimbursement, workers' compensation, insurance, liability, and dispute resolution.

How is WARN different from an existing statewide mutual aid program managed by emergency management?

  • WARN agreements do not require a local declaration of emergency.
  • Statewide programs do not include private utilities; WARN agreements do.
  • Statewide agreements are managed by the state emergency management agency; WARN is managed by utilities.

What are the benefits of WARN?

  • There is no cost to participate and it's voluntary.
  • Increases emergency preparedness and coordination.
  • Provides a single agreement to access resources statewide.
  • The agreement contains provisions to protect participating utilities.
  • The agreement also provides for cost reimbursement.
  • Both private and public utilities may participate.

For more information, visit the WAWARN website.