The reason behind the stinky spill on the Condamine
A POWER failure is being blamed for a wastewater pump malfunction that led to effluent washing into the Condamine River on Wednesday.
The Southern Downs Regional Council is currently investigating the wastewater spill and is advising residents to avoid swimming or fishing in the river until it has given the all clear.
Staff from the council and the Queensland Department of Environmental Services are testing the water for potential E Coli contamination and it is expected to take at least five days before they'll know if the river is safe to enter.
A council spokeswoman said residents should heed the warning signs.
"The public will be advised when the river is returned to its normal condition following water quality testing but until then signage has been erected advising residents not to swim or fish in the water until further notice," she said.
"The pump had been checked on Monday afternoon and the power failure occurred some time between Monday and about 1pm Wednesday."
The failed pump is located near Federation Park behind Bunnings Warehouse. Council staff were on site within 30 minutes of the leak being reported and had cleared most of the spilt effluent. However, some of the contaminated material reached the river.
"Were were lucky we had the rain fall. It will dilute wastewater really quickly and wash it down stream," the spokeswoman said.