A colleague of San Jose Water employees wearing protective gear while on the job during COVID-19 pandemic.

Working Together During COVID-19

A San Jose Water employee checking information on a laptop with a protective face mask on.

It’s an unsettling time — one filled with sheltering-in-place, social distancing and cloth face coverings. But one thing you never need to worry about is your water. Your tap water is safe to drink. And we’re here doing our job — 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

San Jose Water (SJW) is considered an essential service provider during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our staff continues to protect public health by providing clean, safe and reliable water to everyone. 

That’s right — we’re here to serve you! SJW continuously plans for many types of emergencies, including pandemics. Our staff has worked tirelessly to protect the health and safety of our employees and customers while keeping the water flowing.

That doesn’t mean we’re operating business as usual. COVID-19 has meant rethinking everything we do. Rest assured that these changes have NOT impacted the safety of our water.

Here are just some of the things we are doing to protect you and our employees during this extraordinary time:

  • New safety programs have been implemented to keep our staff safe while working—they also help keep our communities healthy:
    • Social distancing signs for safety barricades are used at job sites.
    • Mandatory online employee safety trainings have been implemented, including: Field Handwashing and Disinfection, Disinfecting Tools, Cloth Face Coverings, Working in Public, Preventing Getting Sick, Fueling Vehicles, and How to Remove Gloves. 
    • Additional Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) was procured for staff, including cloth face masks, disinfecting materials for tools, and hand sanitizer options for use in the field.
    • All in-person staff meetings are held outside with social distancing in mind, i.e. shift change meetings are held at trucks in the yard.
    • Teleconferencing has allowed SJW to continue staff meetings, share information and manage business operations in a safe manner.
  • Our Montevina Water Treatment Plant continues to operate around the clock to make sure water is flowing for customers.
  • Our walk-in Customer Service office has been closed, including the Drop Box for payments. Our friendly Customer Service staff are working remotely and can help you via email customer.service@sjwater.com or phone (408) 279-7900.
  • All buildings have been closed to the public with limited employee access.
  • We have implemented a one person/one vehicle rule. Every vehicle is assigned to one person alone for safety. Crew trucks that normally hold 3 to 4 employees are sent with just one driver. Fellow crew members drive separately to enforce social distancing rules.
  • Only essential work is being performed.
  • Water Quality testing continues. We take hundreds of samples per month.
  • We continue to support our local communities in need. Our most recent donations include $10,000 to the Silicon Valley Leadership Group to buy PPE for county hospital staff, and $5,000 to the Second Harvest Food Bank to provide meals for those who need help getting access to food.
  • We are connecting with internal staff, local emergency officials, and fellow utilities to ensure that everyone is up-to-date in an ever changing environment. Public health and employee safety are always at the forefront of our work.

 

Until the COVID-19 situation is under control, please #stayhome and help us #flattenthecurve. Know that SJW has your back and will continue to provide safe and clean water to you and your community.