Standpipes closures - Shires of Lake Grace and Kulin
Water Corporation reassures the communities of Lake Grace and Kulin that it has not closed all standpipes in the two shires, with 15 still available to supply drinking water.
Nine standpipes in the shires were temporarily closed late last week to preserve drinking water supplies for businesses and households connected to Water Corporation’s scheme.
Water Corporation is liaising with the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation who manage a strategic network of emergency water supplies ready to support southern farmers to manage the impact of dry conditions on water for livestock.
Water Corporation Great Southern Regional Manager, Adrian Stewart, explained that large volumes of water had been taken from some standpipes recently for commercial or farming purposes, which meant access had to be limited to preserve the town’s water supply.
“Our first priority is to ensure we have enough drinking water to supply people connected to our scheme,” Mr Stewart said.
“We continually monitor the levels of water available to Lake Grace and Kulin to ensure there is sufficient supply for residents and businesses connected to the scheme.
“When it became apparent there had been a great drawdown on drinking water from standpipes for uses such as stock watering and spraying, we had to make the difficult decision to close some standpipes.
“Even with some standpipes closed, demand is so large that we are pumping around 1.5 million litres of water into the Lake Grace water supply scheme each day to maintain supplies in town.
“It is important to note that not all fixed standpipes are temporarily closed. Within the Shire of Kulin, 8 of the 10 available standpipes are still open and in the Shire of Lake Grace 7 of the 14 standpipes are still open.
“Standpipe users can check with their shire to confirm these locations, and discuss alternative non-drinking water options available for stock water.”
Water Corporation has made available to both shires water from nine dams, which are no longer used to supply drinking water, but are still suitable for stock water and spraying.
Water Corporation will continue to assist the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation to investigate ways some non-scheme water supplies can be made available to those not connected to scheme water.
“But I encourage standpipe users to make sure they have an alternative back up source of water as our first priority is to residents and businesses connected to our schemes for their drinking water,” Mr Stewart said.
Water Corporation expects the nine standpipes in the two shires to be available for use again in three to four weeks. Water Corporation will provide updates to the Shires of Lake Grace and Kulin, who can then advise standpipes users (most of which are registered with the Shires) of their status.
For more information about emergency water supply network to support farmers visit the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation’s website.
There you can find the Emergency farmland water response plan Shire of Lake Grace and the Emergency farmland water response plan Shire of Kulin. These plans refer to the use of standpipes:
“It should be emphasised that water made available from standpipes/tanks linked to a piped water service is intended for short term emergency use only, not as a regular source of water to provide for the on-going needs of a farming business.
Unrestricted draw down from standpipes may compromise the rate of supply to landholders connected directly to the pipeline or town’s people. The Water Corporation aims to limit the daily flow from standpipes to 50 kL. Tank storage is encouraged in order to provide reserve capacity and limit draw down directly from standpipes at peak times.
The Water Corporation reserves the right to close standpipes should supply to the system be compromised.”
Contact: Kate Duff
Position: Great Southern Region, Senior Advisor - Customer & Stakeholder
Phone: (08) 9842 4252