The swollen Brogo River after heavy rainfall. Image credit: Bega District News.
Level 4 water restrictions have come into effect for customers using the Brogo-Bermagui water supply system.
Heavy rainfall across the Brogo River catchment has led to water carting from the Merimbula system until water quality improves at the pumping source.
The Brogo-Bermagui Water Supply System feeds Quaama, Cobargo, Bermagui, Beauty Point, Fairhaven, Wallaga Lake, Wallaga Lake Heights, Akolele and Wallaga Lake Koori Village.
Bega Valley Shire Council’s Director of Assets and Operations, Anthony McMahon, said heavy rainfall has caused poor water quality at the source.
“Runoff from the catchment has resulted in water at the Brogo River source that is too poor to treat with the temporary settling plant built following the Black Summer bushfires,” Mr McMahon said.
“To ensure high water quality is delivered to our Brogo-Bermagui water supply customers we have engaged local contractors to cart water from our Merimbula system.
“As a result, short-term Level 4 water restrictions are now in place for customers serviced by the Brogo-Bermagui water supply system to reduce water usage and minimise water carting by truck.
“Under level 4 water restrictions, outdoor water use is restricted to essential health and safety purposes. This means the use of water for garden watering, washing cars and boats, or for any other purpose is not permitted.”
Mr McMahon said the situation has been compounded by another water source feeding the Brogo-Bermagui water supply system.
“Couria Creek has also been isolated until turbidity falls below the critical control point required for this water source.
“We are anticipating Couria Creek water quality will improve over the next couple of days, making it suitable for re-supplying water to the Brogo-Bermagui system.
“Also, turbidity levels should decrease in the Brogo River over the weekend to a level suitable for treatment early next week.
“We urge people reliant on the Brogo-Bermagui supply to reduce their inside and outside water use immediately to ensure there is enough for everyone.
“Please think about reducing time spent in the shower and how often you run your washing machine and dishwasher. Every drop you save will help to secure your water supply over the next week.
“Without a significant reduction in demand there is a possibility we will need to resupply water from the Brogo River before it has reached desired quality levels.
“If this occurs, the water supplied to the system will likely be discoloured and may have a noticeable taste and smell, resulting in the announcement of a boil water notice.
“We acknowledge the difficulty this situation will create for many people and businesses in the area and we thank everyone in advance for their understanding and cooperation during this challenging time.”
For more information on water across our Shire, visit www.begavalley.nsw.gov.au/water