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Reservoirs Act (Northern Ireland) 2015

Section 26 – Duties etc. in relation to supervision

This section sets out the key aspects of supervision by commissioned supervising engineers. Subsection (2) lists the engineer’s duties; they include notifying the reservoir manager of anything which could affect the safety of the reservoir, monitor compliance with any direction in latest inspection report or recommendation in a pre-commencement inspection report as regards measures to be taken in the interests of safety which is a measure for its maintenance and, monitoring any other matters to be supervised as detailed in an inspection or pre-commencement report, safety report, preliminary certificate or final certificate. The supervising engineer is also required to notify the reservoir manager and the Department of any failure to comply with any requirement of a direction or recommendation in the latest inspection or pre-commencement report, safety report, preliminary or final certificate, supervise any proposed drawdown of the reservoir and monitor the reservoir manager’s recording of water levels and record keeping. The supervising engineer is required to physically visit the controlled reservoir at certain intervals depending on the reservoir designation of the reservoir and in accordance with regulations made under section 27, or undertake additional visits, if recommended in the latest inspection report.

If a supervising engineer considers that a controlled reservoir should be inspected, by an inspecting engineer, subsection (3) requires the supervising engineer to give the reservoir manager a written recommendation to this effect and copy to the Department. Subsection (4) requires the reservoir manager to carry out visual inspections of the reservoir at specified intervals if directed in writing by the supervising engineer for the purposes of identifying anything which may affect the safety of the reservoir.

Subsection (5) requires the supervising engineer to give the reservoir manager an annual written statement of the steps taken by the supervising engineer in relation to his or her responsibilities and any measure taken by the reservoir manger in the interests of safety or to maintain the reservoir. The supervising engineer must send a copy of the written statement to the Department within 28 days (subsection (6)).

Under subsection (7) the supervising engineer must provide the reservoir manager with emergency contact details and in the event of him or her not being available, the contact details of a nominated representative. The supervising engineer is required to provide the Department with such information within 28 days.

Subsection (8) requires a reservoir manager of a high or medium consequence reservoir which is the subject of a pre-commencement inspection report (section 31 refers) to give a copy of the report to the supervising engineer along with any pre-commencement report certificate or other document which the reservoir manager considers relevant to the taking of a pre-commencement safety recommendation.

Subsection (10) provides that references to the term ‘the supervising engineer’ in this section and sections 27 to 31, 35 and 37 are to be construed as including a nominated representative who is acting in place of the supervising engineer if that engineer is unavailable. This ensures that, while the nominated representative is acting in place of the supervising engineer, the Act’s provisions in relation to a supervising engineer are to be read as if they referred to the nominated representative.

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Text created by the Northern Ireland Assembly department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes accompany all Acts of the Northern Ireland Assembly.


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