A mobile water treatment unit has been sent to the far north to support the rural communities of Kaitaia and Kaikohe because they are facing a severe drought and water shortages. The unit will treat water drawn from a bore on a local farm.
Two containers, housing an ultraviolet disinfection unit and a liquid chlorine dosing system, left Auckland yesterday (17th February) on the back of a truck and arrived at the Far North District Council’s offices in Kaikohe just after lunchtime. A small Watercare team will follow the units to help install them and show their Far North District Council colleagues how to run them.
Once the mobile water treatment unit is up and running, treated water will be available for tanker delivery operators to fill up and supply rural communities who have long waits for water. Kaikohe and Kaitia residents are currently on level 4 water restrictions and are banned from using water for irrigations, sprinklers, hoses and filling swimming pools.
Watercare head of operations excellence, Priyan Perera says, “Our country is susceptible to extreme weather events and we have experienced natural disasters, so we always try to help each other out if and where we can.”
Far North District Council Infrastructure and Asset Management General Manager Andy Finch says, getting the bore up and running will reduce pressure on the Kaitaia Water Treatment Plant: “The bore is located on private farmland and hasn’t been used for a while, so it will be great to treat the bore water and get it running. There’s a lot of pressure on the Awanui River which supplies our treatment plant, so having a second water source will really help everyone.”
In Auckland, we're supporting rural communities by enabling water tanker operators to fill up at 12 filling stations. Due to the high demand on private water tanker operators at this time, Auckland Council is also supporting rural residents by providing community water collection sites and showering facilities. Recently, Council started supplementing our filling stations by using large milk tankers (approved for water provision) to fill up private water tankers – this is helping the private water tankers to get through their waiting lists more swiftly.
Further details are available on Auckland Council’s website: https://ourauckland.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/articles/news/2020/02/water-community/