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New WinDes functions enable automatic compliance

Posted: Tuesday 11th July 2006

A new version of WinDes, the drainage design suite from Micro Drainage, incorporates new features designed specifically to assist compliance with Sewers For Adoption, 6th Edition (SFA6). The latest edition of SFA was published in March and implemented in May, with the primary aim of speeding up the adoption process and keeping pace with new regulatory requirements and key industry issues.

The features introduced in version W10.2 add new functions to the System 1 modules (Storm, Foul, Schedules and Longsection), as well as to Source Control, Simulation and the Advanced Productivity Tools (APT).

“SFA6 reflects the rapid pace of change in our industry,” says Micro Drainage managing director Aidan Millerick. “We are seeing an unprecedented flood of new regulations, guidelines and policies, all of which have a significant impact on the day-to-day priorities of engineers.

“However, we believe that the process of complying with these requirements can have a positive effect on productivity and competitiveness. We have updated our software and our training courses to accommodate the new regulatory regimes.”

Among the drivers for change affecting SFA6 are the Interim Code of Practice for SUDS (ICP), the Defra Protocol on the design, construction and adoption of sewers in England and Wales and the Water Act of 2003, which made public lateral drains serving individual properties part of the adoptable sewerage system.

PPS25, the Government’s Planning Policy Statement, is also a factor, calling for flood risk assessments to help manage flood risk on new developments.

“It’s difficult for engineers working in high-pressure environments to familiarise themselves with every new piece of legislation or policy,” says Aidan Millerick. “Our aim is to allow them to comply with SFA6 easily, by building the relevant procedures into the software and making the key elements of it part of our training.”

Clauses 1.19.3 to 1.19.14 of SFA6 indicate the various issues that Developers will need to consider if SUDS systems are to be included in a Section 104 Agreement. The WinDes Source Control module enables Developers to design SUDS systems in accordance with these criteria, and the Sustainable Drainage Systems training course covers SUDS feasibility, design and auditing.

The modifications to System 1 and Simulation cover compliance with requirements set out in Clauses 2.12 and 2.13, concerning design flows, self-cleansing velocities and the application of the Wallingford Procedure. The Fundamentals of Design course provides practical, hands-on training in the use of System 1 for compliance.

Attenuation and the effects of flooding are covered in Clause 2.14. It includes the requirement to design for a 30-year storm and to show flood flow paths for storms that exceed the design criteria.

The Simulation module enables each storm duration to be checked for the 30-year return period and APT can be used to identify the critical storm at each node, in a single run. Source Control enables the design of appropriate attenuation structures and Simulation and APT are used to check for surcharging and flooding. APT will illustrate flood flow paths and can be used to check for increased rainfall intensities arising from climate change.

All of the above criteria is covered in the Increased Productivity – auditing and graphical design training course.

Increasing development of brownfield sites, where there is a mix of urban and rural landscaping, have created the requirement to restrict flows from new developments to their pre-development rates. Clause 2.15 of SFA6 is focused on control of surface water discharges and these requirements are addressed by Source Control, System 1 and Simulation.

In addition, Clause 2.15 calls for the management of surface water in line with both the Interim Code of Practice for SUDS and PPS25. PPS25 requires a Flood Risk Assessment (FRA) as part of any planned development, System 1, Simulation, Source Control and APT are all used to produce FRAs and the relevant issues are covered in the training course focusing on Flood Risk Assessment, Greenfield Runoff and Unit Hydrographs.

“There has been a significant shift in the critical issues confronting developers and engineers,” states Aidan Millerick. “SFA6 and PPS25 have implications for any proposed development, because they can prevent development being allowed at all unless the proposals for drainage are compliant with technical, environmental and planning requirements”.

“WinDes is designed to ensure compliance while boosting productivity. We believe it is an essential tool for engineers working in today’s rigorous and fast-changing regulatory regime.”

For further information about WinDes W10.2 and Micro Drainage training, visit, call 01635 582555 or email

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