Bega Valley Shire CouncilBega Valley Shire Council

Fix your water with #TrunkLife campaign

Trunk main connections deliver erratic pressure, and in places untreated water.
Trunk main connections deliver erratic pressure, and in places untreated water.

A new Bega Valley Shire Council campaign aimed at helping trunk main customers to improve their water supply has kicked off with some frank advice for rural residents.

Launched last week, the #TrunkLife campaign paints an honest picture of the problems trunk main customers have with their water supply and outlines the steps they can take to fix it.

Council’s Manager of Water and Sewerage Services, Chris Best said the #TrunkLife campaign is about helping people living out of town to get a safe and reliable water supply.

“We have more than 600 customers connected to a water trunk main,” Mr Best said.

“While these customers draw water from our supply network, it can be a very different experience compared with people who enjoy the benefits of town water.

“Trunk mains are not designed for delivering water to your taps. They are a network of big pipelines intended for the transport of water from source to reservoir and from storage to one of our many treatment plants.

“This means if you are connected to a trunk main that pulls water from a creek, you are getting untreated water pumped to your home. Unlike water that has been through a treatment plant, this water is not always safe to drink.

“We have lots of customers from Tantawangalo to Wolumla, and some near Kiah and Tilba receiving raw creek water through their taps.

“We have always been upfront with customers in these areas, but it may be possible that some people are unaware of their trunk main connection.

“With our TrunkLife campaign, we are contacting residents directly, giving the information and advice they need to fix water pressure or quality issues for good.

“In short, if you are connected to a trunk main, you need a small tank and pump, or at minimum an inexpensive pressure reducing valve installed by a plumber.

“If you are connected to a trunk main that draws water directly from an untreated source, you will need to treat your drinking water by bringing it to a rolling boil, or filter and disinfect to remove any potential pathogens”.

Mr Best said while only some trunk main customers need to treat their water, everyone connected to one of these mains will at some point experience an unreliable supply.

“The supply can fluctuate without warning. At best this can lead to frustratingly slow water flow, and at worst this can mean broken appliances or going without water when you really need it.

“This is not a failure to provide an adequate service for our customers, it’s a consequence of being connected to a part of our network not intended for household water delivery.

“With the TrunkLife campaign we are showing people how to get the most out of their trunk main connection through practical solutions that deliver safer water and a predictable supply,” Mr Best said.

Visit the #TrunkLife webpages on Council’s website to learn more about the campaign.

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