Western Power is committed to working with the community and industry in ensuring the delivery of safe and reliable power, and energy products and services to meet their needs.
Western Power continues to experience a high number of applications with design and delivery timeframes remaining the same. We will continue to work with industry to understand their project delivery timelines and ensure that all necessary approvals and DCR conformance requirements are met.
As part of our ongoing commitment to improve land development application power connection timeframes, we’ve completed a review of our land development process in collaboration with industry representatives and have developed a refined DCR process for residential subdivisions. The new process will be implemented via a phased approach, commencing with a trial program.
DCR Trial Program
The DCR Trial program is aimed to improve our overall land development power connection timeframes, the quality of applications submitted to Western Power and the overall customer experience. The trial will take place over 3 months, commencing this month.
The objectives of the DCR Trial program is to:
- Improve customer design submissions whilst restoring DCR process to conformance reviews
- Reduce Western Power DCR reviews to 1 in 5 applications (currently 5 in 5)
- Trial process validation to reduce applications backlog and restore DCR response times to <8 weeks
- Reduce resource load across key stakeholder groups
- Insights for further end-to-end process improvements
The key changes of the trial includes:
- The addition of a third party assurer requirement as part of the customer’s design preparation phase
to certify compliance of a design before it is submitted to Western Power
- Newly created reference materials
- A design conformance checklist to complement the UDS Manual
- Weekly engagement activities with trial participants
- A dedicated technical trial lead provided by Western Power to enable improved design conformance
Customer design support
- Western Power has created electrical design reference materials and a UDS checklist to enable customers to cross reference design requirements during the design preparation stages
- Western Power will provide a dedicated technical trial lead who will facilitate and oversee the DCR process for each electrical design package and will be available as a reference point for design guidance and support
- Western Power will facilitate weekly DCR trial status meetings with trial participants & stakeholders
- Western Power will reintroduce the quarterly technical electrical consultant forums
- Western Power will perform updates to the UDS Manual via a staged approach over the next 12 months
External Third-Party Design Certification
- Developers participating in the trial program will engage a third-party assurer who must be an Engineering Consulting Company registered on the National Engineering Register (NER) for both electrical and civil disciplines. Western Power will provide a list of criteria which an approved third-party assurer must meet.
- The third-party assurer will assess the completed design produced by the electrical consultant and will provide a completed Compliance Certificate verifying the design meets all design conformance requirements in line with Western Power’s UDS Manual and checklist.
- The completed Compliance Certificate will then be submitted to Western Power as part of the completed design package submission.
Design Package Selections
Western Power has identified and chosen 15 Design packages eligible for the DCR trial program with the following criteria in mind which will include but not limited to:
- Designs must be chosen from the existing backlog of designs in the validation stage
- Designs must have had a detailed DIP completed
- Designs must have had all required planning approvals in place
- Designs have been selected in a variety of levels 1-4 complexity
- Designs have been selected in a variety of geographical locations across the SWIS
We understand the ongoing challenges the land development industry has encountered over the past 12 months. In addition to the DCR trial program, we have continued to implement measures including outsourcing various land development activities and redeploying business resources to support critical programs of work. Please be assured we’re working to mitigate delays as a matter of priority.
For information on project status updates, please refer to previously published communication: External design and construction projects.