Council continues to develop and implement strategies to improve water quality in the South Ayr, Brandon and Rossiters Hill areas.
As a drinking water provider, Council tests the water regularly for the presence of bacteria, heavy metals, chemicals and concentrations of these must fall within the limits set out in the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines which are developed by the National Health and Medical Research Council. Samples are sent to independent laboratories for verification that the guidelines are being met.
The source water extracted from the borefield at South Ayr is perfectly clear when it reaches the surface and only becomes discoloured when dissolved iron and manganese present in the water oxidises when coming into contact with oxygen. Discolouration is increased when the water is treated with chlorine to remove any harmful bacteria prior to consumption.
Council recognises that incidences of discoloured water are unacceptable so, in addition to the reactive process of flushing mains where discoloured water occurs, Council has instigated a number of actions to improve water quality, including:
- the introduction of four new bores in the Rossiters Hill area into the network with expected commissioning by early 2015,
- ongoing air scouring of distribution mains prioritising South Ayr, Rossiters Hill and Brandon areas,
- planned installation of scour injection points on the 500mm trunk main between South Ayr Water Treatment Plant and Blacks Bridge to allow regular scouring,
- completed installation of a scour injection point on the 375mm trunk main in Railway Street between Burke Street and Macmillan Street to allow regular scouring,
- completed air scouring of the 300mm trunk main in Burke Street from Railway Street to Edwards Street,
- bi-annual scouring of the 300mm trunk main between Ayr and Brandon and the 250mm trunk main from South Ayr to Rossiters Hill during school holidays at Easter and September,
- completed the installation of a baffle system at the South Ayr Treatment Plant reservoir to increase precipitatation of iron and manganese from the bore water prior to entering distribution network,
- planned installation of variable speed drive pump motors at South Ayr Treatment Plant to achieve uniform pressures and positive flows throughout the system.