Call to cut back on water use

STANTHORPE residents on town water supply are being urged to use water conservatively next Tuesday as Southern Downs Regional Council conducts maintenance at Storm King Dam.

Director of Engineering Services Peter See said this was a precaution only, and the water supply was not expected to be interrupted.

"This maintenance has been 12 months in the planning and is a substantial and complex job requiring multiple pieces of equipment and 20 staff working simultaneously to get a by-pass job done in a day.

"It involves shutting down the 'wet well' in the dam wall to replace four of the original 1954-vintage valves. The wet well controls the flow of water from the dam into the gravity feed main trunk line. It will need to be by-passed during the works which may take several weeks.

"Our crews are currently building a temporary wet well by-pass that will be lifted into place over the dam wall by a crane on Tuesday and installed.

"This means that water delivery Storm King Dam to the Stanthorpe reservoir will be turned off on Tuesday and only the water already stored in the reservoir will be available for use on Tuesday.

"Water supply to town should not be interrupted; however, as a precautionary measure we're asking all residents to conserve water on Tuesday.

"On the same day while the feed to the reservoir is shut down, crews will replace valves and leaking joints along the trunk main below the dam and install isolation valves to the pump station to make it easier to carry out maintenance on the pumps in future."

The by-pass will remain in place until all the valve replacement work in the dam has been done.

The job is the first stage of over $1m worth of upgrades to Storm King Dam required by the State Government.

It continues an ongoing program of maintenance and replacement to water mains around Stanthorpe. In 2010/11 Council replaced over 130 valves and hydrants along the Stanthorpe water mains.

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