Leak monitoring being extended to Armidale

A hidden water leaks monitoring program is being extended to the Armidale town supply, after pipe inspections in Guyra led to a significant number of urgent repairs.

Contractor Detection Services was engaged by Council to monitor the Guyra town water supply system in June and July and found 46 leaks of varying severity.

“The inspections were an important response to the ongoing drought and severe shortage of town water. They enabled us to move immediately to make repairs and help protect the remaining town supply,” Armidale Regional Council Mayor Simon Murray said.

“Council is very conscious that Armidale and Guyra both have ageing water distribution infrastructure and we are focused on a long-term program of asset replacement as resources become available.

“Most water utilities in Australia are faced with aging infrastructure and leaking pipelines. Our situation with quickly diminishing town supplies is just adding to the importance of responding quickly to water losses,” Cr Murray said.

“While necessary repairs on infrastructure is generally not good news, in this instance it has at least identified further actions we can take to protect our supply.”

Detection Services was engaged as Guyra was preparing to go from Level 4 to Level 5 water restrictions.

The contractor undertook visual and acoustic monitoring of Guyra’s 49 kilometres of pipeline. It also fitted meters on mains out to the town’s water reservoirs to monitor flows at night when usage should be minimal. The meters will remain in place until all the reported leaks are fixed.

Detection Services will be providing a full report to Council on the nature of the leaks it found and the extent of the water losses.

Tenders will soon be invited for a contractor to conduct similar monitoring of the Armidale town supply, which comprises 330km of pipeline.

At the same time, Council is stepping up its community information program to help bring town water consumption down to 160 litres per person per day.

“We have seen an encouraging reduction in water use this month, with average consumption dropping from 222 litres to approximately 200 litres,” Councillor Murray said.

“Community feedback is showing there are many residents doing what they can to cut their consumption. We just need everyone to get on board to follow some simple measures to be water wise and help reach our target of 160.”

Visit Council’s website for a number of easy water saving tips.

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