System Integrator Mr. Shane Stevens, Owner of Impact Automation and Controls (, discusses how his company worked with Lake Cities Municipal Utility Authority (LCMUA) in Texas and deployed ICONICS software to accommodate the LCMUA remote workforce, handle alarms with reliable notifications, and extend the network to support their mobile workforce without sacrificing on security constraints, resulting in more efficient operations.

Video Transcript

[0:00] Mr. Jotham Kildea, ICONICS Solution Sales Supervisor

So, with that, unfortunately, Shane couldn't be with us today. But he was nice enough to give us a recording ahead of time. I spoke with Shane Stevens from Impact Automation a little while ago. He is one of the head integrators that's been working on the Lake Cities Municipal Utility Authority in Texas just north of Dallas. So, we've got a prerecorded talk I think they’re going to play for us right now.

[0:36] Mr. Shane Stevens, Owner of Impact Automation and Controls 

Hi, I’m Shane Stevens with Impact Automation and Controls, and I'm happy to be part of ICONICS Connect 2021. Impact Automation and Controls provides consulting, configuration, programming, troubleshooting, and training services for industrial and municipal customers. We're located in the Dallas-Fort Worth area; we are able to work remote or onsite all over the United States. Today we're going to talk about Lake Cities Municipal Utility Authority otherwise known as LCMUA. They’re located in Lake Dallas, Texas. They provide superior drinking water, fire protection, pressure, and sewage collection for the Tri Cities area – Shady Shores, Lake Dallas, and Hickory Creek. They operate 21 lift stations, 46 pumps, three pump stations with ten pumps, three elevated storage towers, and three ground storage tanks. 


LCMUA has an onsite solution to provide visibility to the team being that they run a lean operating system; they don't always have an operator at the ready 24/7 to monitor the system. To accommodate that, Lake Cities’ often remote workforce, LCMUA, uses a remote solution to extend their SCADA to their smartphones. This allows them to have access to SCADA data wherever they go. 


The team always has access to the system for their mobile devices. So why send automated notifications for alarms? Well, they're typically busy working on projects, preventative maintenance, or fixing repairs, leaks, things like that. They can’t always watch the operations at all times. By sending them text messages to their smartphones, they can only be notified when they need to have their attention pulled away from their daily duties. This allows them to be more efficient, while maintaining a leaner workforce. As the message comes in on their smartphone, they've got their device in their hand and can quickly switch over to the mobile app and see what's going on, acknowledge alarms, send out a truck, whatever they need to do to get that problem solved. They can make that decision very quickly. 


They also needed a system that allows them to share the workload. With the solution they chose, it allows them to share the workload effectively. We can schedule it, so we're sending water alarms to the water department, wastewater alarms to the wastewater department. Rather than everyone getting the same alarms all the time, we can decide who gets what alarm when. 


Scheduling is very important as operators are not always on shift. They may be on vacation. We've got on call rotations we need to change. And with the new hires and retiring operators, we need to be able to maintain that efficiently. So, the solution is simple to adjust. And we can change the schedule as needed to make sure we're running at optimum efficiency. 


What about security? That's what everybody asked. We've got operators out in the field with mobile devices accessing the SCADA system. How are we keeping that secure? Lake Cities thought of this; they hired an outside IT consulting group to develop a security model that'll fit their needs. Utilizing DMZ and end-to-end encryption, they've secured it in a way that suits them. Their goal was to extend the network to support their mobile workforce without sacrificing on security constraints. And I believe they accomplished that. Again, this is Shane Stevens with Impact Automation and Controls and I'm happy to be part of ICONICS Connect 2021. Thank you.