Following the publication by Water UK of a revised version of Sewers for Adoption, dubbed SfA 8, the substance of the text has now been used as the basis for the Design and Construction Guidance document (DCG) which is being recommended to Ofwat as part of the water sector’s work to implement Ofwat’s adoption code which can be found here.
Ofwat is currently considering the documentation presented by water companies, including the DCG.
There is no deadline for the introduction of the new approach to sewerage adoption although water companies are proposing that given the extent of changes resulting from the new approach, it should be effective as from 1 April 2020. In contrast to the previous voluntary status of SfA, when the new guidance does come into effect, it will be the only guide to the standards that sewers must meet if they are to be adoptable by water and sewerage companies in England.
A major change in the new guidance is that for the first time, guidance has been provided on SuDS which are adoptable as sewers.
We are not anticipating significant changes to the “SuDS” elements of the DCG and Water UK and its members are working actively to prepare for the changes to policies and procedures that will be needed to implement the new arrangements. In advance of the formal commencement date, some water and sewerage companies may be willing to use the new guidance as the basis for sewer adoption.
We have also prepared a non-technical guide to the new approach which explains how it applies in practice. The guide contains illustrations of potentially adoptable SuDS assets and is available here”.