Kaikoura township water supplies safe to drink

The Canterbury DHB and Kaikoura District Council announced today that people who live in the Kaikoura township and at Ocean Ridge no longer need to boil their water. Boil water notices remain in place for all other parts of the district for the summer period.

Boil water notices have been lifted for the three drinking water supplies servicing urban Kaikoura – Kaikoura Township, Kaikoura Suburban and Kincaid. The boil water notice at nearby Ocean Ridge has also been lifted.

Chief executive Angela Oosthuizen has thanked Council staff and contractors for their tireless work making the town’s water safe to drink. “Being able to lift the boil water notice in Kaikoura township before Christmas has been a significant achievement,” says Mrs Oosthuizen.

Shortly after the 14 November earthquake Canterbury Medical Officer of Health Dr Ramon Pink wrote to the Kaikoura District Council outlining the steps required to ensure drinking supplies are safe.

Mrs Oosthuizen says these steps have now been achieved for the supplies servicing urban Kaikoura and Ocean Ridge. Actions that have been taken include:

  • Increasing the amount of chlorine in drinking water. While this may have a slight effect on the taste of the water, it has made it safer to drink. Further infrastructure improvements will allow chlorine levels to be reduced over time.
  • A commitment to increasing the frequency of drinking water supply sampling for the next two months.
  • Investing in new infrastructure, including replacing the temporary above ground pipes with wider pipes to improve water flow.

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health Dr Ramon Pink says it’s important that people coming to Kaikoura for the holidays, who are staying in the township or at Ocean Ridge, take certain precautions to ensure their water is safe to drink.

“If you are staying at a house which hasn’t been occupied since the quakes (or if you are unsure whether it has or not) take the time to inspect your water pipes and tanks for any damage. To remove water that hasn’t been adequately treated from your system it’s important to open all taps and run your water for 10 minutes.”

Boil water notices remain in place for the other four Council water supplies that service the Kaikoura District:

  • Oaro
  • Fernleigh
  • East Coast Rural
  • Peketa

“If you live outside the Kaikoura township and Ocean Ridge please continue to boil your water,” says Dr Pink. “These supplies have sustained significant damage and boil water notices will remain in place for the foreseeable future. They are not secure supplies and remain at risk of contamination. Please continue to boil your drinking water until you’re informed by the Council that the boil water notice is no longer in place,” says Dr Pink.

Dr Pink is reminding people with their own private water supplies to look for any obvious signs of damage to pipes and bore heads, and ensure their supply has been tested for the presence of bacteria by an IANZ accredited lab since the quakes. “It is good practice for those on private water supplies to test these quarterly, after heavy rainfall, and following significant earthquakes,” says Dr Pink.

Source: Canterbury DHB media release (23rd December 2016).

Published on Tuesday, January 10th, 2017, under Uncategorised
Page last updated: 08/02/2017

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