GRANDE PRAIRIE – As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to progress, Aquatera is actively engaged in following best practices as recommended by Alberta Health Services and appropriate authorities.
“The health, safety and well-being of our customers, communities and employees is Aquatera’s top priority,” says Vaughn Bend, Aquatera’s Chief Executive Officer. “After careful consideration, we have decided that suspending all non-essential in-person services is in the best interest of our communities.”
On March 16, Aquatera closed its Head Office to the public as a preventative safety measure but continues to maintain all essential services. The phone lines remain open and Aquatera is regularly monitoring emails and LiveChat available on their website, during business hours.
“At this time there are no interruptions to water, wastewater, solid waste, or curbside collection services,” said Bend. “Aquatera is, however, asking customers to adhere to specific safety protocols that will allow the continued delivery of essential services, while minimizing contact.”
Aquatera is asking customers to use alternative methods to make payments on their account. Payment options include Online Payments, Preauthorized Payments, Telephone and Internet Payments through Financial Institutions, and Mail-In Payments. Details on these payment options can be found at https://www.aquatera.ca/your-bill/payment-information.
Aquatera understands that COVID-19 has disrupted the economic climate. To ensure that it’s communities and residents are supported during this time and can focus on the health of themselves and their families, Aquatera will be offering flexible payment options for residents and small businesses that are experiencing financial difficulties. Additionally, Aquatera will be deferring late fees and account shut-offs for 90 days. Customers are encouraged to keep their accounts in good standing. For more information, please contact Aquatera’s Account Services department at 780.538.0340. Aquatera asks that customers delay calling until the week of March 30, once the program is in place.
Residential meter repairs are suspended until further notice, unless there is confirmed property damage or a risk to public health and safety.
Bend also announced the resumption of all solid waste services.
“Effective Thursday, March 19, the Eco Centre, Landfill and Landfill Transfer Station will resume regular operating hours, with specific protocols that will be enforced to minimize contact.”
Customers will be required to exercise social distancing practices and maintain a distance of 1-2 metres from other customers and staff members. Customers recycling at the Eco Centre will be asked not to approach employees with their items, but to place their items on a platform where they will be collected and appropriately placed by Eco Centre employees.
Customers will be required to exercise social distancing practices and maintain a distance of 1-2 metres from other customers and staff members. Additionally, customers are asked to stay in their vehicle at all times, until directed by the Scale Operator. All cash and coin payments are suspended; only credit and debit payments will be accepted, and only if the card is present on site.
Landfill Transfer Station
Customers will be required to exercise social distancing practices and maintain a distance of 1-2 metres from other customers and staff members. Operators will not be assisting in refuse offloading, unless customers require assistance due to health reasons. Additionally, the Recycle/Take Back Centre, where gently used items are dropped off for others to collect free of charge, will be closed until further notice.
Account and Commercial Customers
Customers will be required to exercise social distancing practices and maintain a distance of 1-2 metres from other customers and staff members. Aquatera will resume the signing of tickets, using proper disinfection practices of pens and clipboards. Customers are encouraged to use their own pens to minimize contact.
There is no interruption to garbage or recycling curbside collection. Customers are asked to ensure their garbage and recycling is placed curbside by 7 a.m. on their collection day.
In addition to these precautionary measures, Aquatera has implemented safety protocols for all staff and facilities, including travel restrictions for employees travelling outside of and returning to Canada; enhanced disinfection and hygiene protocols; social distancing practices; and exposure limitations.
“Aquatera is committed to the continued deliver of the essential services we provide,” said Bend. “We have a dedicated team putting the health and safety of our customers, communities and employees first,” says Bend.
As a provider of essential services in the Grande Prairie region, Aquatera is committed to closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and providing further updates on the impacts this will have on its customers and communities. For more information and regular updates, please visit www.aquatera.ca/covid19.
Aquatera Utilities Inc. is the Grande Prairie region’s provider of water, wastewater and solid waste services. Its core purpose is “Helping Grow Healthy Communities,” and aims to have the best people providing the best service for the best value.
Vaughn Bend, Chief Executive Officer
Aquatera Utilities Inc.
Sarah Martin, Public Relations and Communications Specialist
Aquatera Utilities Inc.