Advocacy, Community, Council

Seddon water plant falls foul of health rules

The new multi-million-dollar treatment plant in Seddon has fallen foul of new water rules.

Marlborough District Council staff are warning residents hooked up to the new network that the boil water notice still stands.

The alert comes after the Ministry of Health (MoH) changed the guidelines.

But council were only made aware of the changes three weeks ago says council’s operations and maintenance engineer Stephen Rooney.

“We are very confident that the plant is compliant.

‘Essentially the issue centers around how we show how much chlorine is going in and how much is going in and how we make that calculation.

“We take that data from one-minute intervals and are working towards that and providing that to Ministry of Health,” he says.

Staff are searching through records going back three months to provide the latest figures.

The changes mean the plant doesn’t yet officially meet the NZ Drinking Water Standard due to a technicality.

Stephen says he expects the boil water notice to be lifted at the start of July.

In the meantime, all water used for drinking, food preparation or cleaning teeth should be boiled before use.

Work on the treatment plant began in January 2018 after more than 10 years of debate on the best way to deliver safe drinking water straight from the tap.

‘We have all the data we need; we just need to supply it in a slightly different format,” Stephen says.

Council will present this information to the Ministry of Health Drinking Water Assessor in early June 2019.

For Awatere Rural areas, the boil water notice will remain in place.

Council is working with Nelson Marlborough District regarding options for supplying rural customers with water compliant with the NZ Drinking Water Standard.

Treated water is available at the public taps on Marama Road, outside Seddon School.

Members of the community can contact council’s customer service centre on 03 520 7400, for further information.

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