Sunday, November 28, 2021

Waipā council flushes water misinformation

Waipā District Council has moved to set the record straight following what it claims is community misinformation about its wastewater treatment processes.

Water Services manager, Martin Mould said following two positive COVID-19 test results in Te Awamutu’s wastewater last week, the district’s wastewater treatment process had been the subject of misinformation and rumours, which undermined public confidence in the process.

He said he wanted to make things “crystal clear” for concerned residents.

“There is no COVID-19 in the district’s drinking water,” Mr Mould said.

The recent positive COVID-19 wastewater results had no bearing on the district’s drinking water, he said.

“Waipā District Council does not, at any point, reintroduce or reuse wastewater for the district’s drinkable water supply. This water, called potable water, does not interact with the district’s wastewater.”

“Our drinking water comes from a number of sources including underground bores in Kihikihi and Te Awamutu, the Waikato River and from Pirongia’s Mangauika stream, and all are treated prior to reaching households.

“It is important to remember that the water we drink goes through a rigorous treatment process to ensure it is up to national public health standards prior to it being delivered to your homes.”

Mr Mould said the treatment of wastewater was completed separately, at an entirely different site, and was performed to regulated standards.

“Wastewater is treated entirely separately from the other two water systems [drinking water and stormwater].”

Council was alerted to the rumours when a member of the public phoned Council, saying they had been purchasing bottled water out of fear of the safety of public drinking water.

Mr Mould said that while he understood the concern, the public needed to have faith in the district’s water treatment system.

“We understand our community is feeling apprehensive around the recent wastewater test results, but we want to reassure residents their drinking water is perfectly safe and reliable,” he said.

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