Floodwaters were rising in Kunghur, in the Tweed Shire, on Wednesday. Picture: Jenny Leunig
Floodwaters were rising in Kunghur, in the Tweed Shire, on Wednesday. Picture: Jenny Leunig

UPDATED: Uki water treatment plant back online after outage

UPDATE 4PM: Tweed Shire Council workers have brought the Uki Water Treatment Plant back online after two bursts of high floodwaters twice cut power to a critical electrical switchboard this week.

The reticulated water supply to the village was interrupted on Monday night when floodwaters submerged the electrical equipment that powers the pumps which draw raw water from the Tweed River into the plant for treatment.

Then, on Wednesday night after another burst of heavy rain, the equipment was submerged again and power was cut once more.

While workers restored power quickly after both incidents, the raw water quality was not suitable for treatment due to the dirtiness of the water and amount of flood debris in the river.

By this morning, the raw water quality had improved sufficiently to treat water and the plant was brought back online, allowing Council to stop tankering emergency water supplies to the village.

EARLIER: UKI residents have been asked to minimise their water consumption as flood impacts continue to have a flow-on effect on the village's water supply.

Tweed Shire Council is continuing to tanker drinking water supplies to the village.

The Uki Water Treatment Plant is not producing drinking water as the raw water quality in the Tweed River is poor due to too much dirt and debris following further heavy rain.

The council has been prepared to bring the facility back online.

But this cannot be done yet.

Floodwater inundated some of the facility's equipment on Monday night, cutting power to the pumps that draw raw water from the river into the plant for treatment.

While the power had been restored and the raw water quality had improved, the latest burst of heavy rain last night again inundated equipment, cutting power to the raw water pumps and bringing a further flood of dirty and debris-filled water.

Power has once again been restored, but the plant will not be brought back into operation until the raw water quality improves so it can be treated to the standards required under the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines.

"We ask all Uki residents to minimise their water consumption to essential use only until we can restore the local supply and stop tankering water," the council's manager of water and wastewater operations Brie Jowett said.

Uki's reticulated water supply is being supplied from the Bray Park Water Treatment Plant and is safe to drink.

The council meanwhile lifted Level 2 water restrictions in Tyalgum today as the raw water quality at the weir improved enough that the local water treatment plant could be brought back online.



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