Perth Children's Hospital lead issue

We can assure residents in the surrounding suburbs near the Perth Children’s Hospital (PCH) - and across the entire metropolitan area - that their water supply meets all health related requirements and is completely safe for use.

Is my water safe to drink?

Supplying safe drinking water is always our highest priority.

There has been no detection of lead above guideline levels in the entire Water Corporation metropolitan water supply scheme since formal records began 18 years ago.

We can assure residents in the surrounding suburbs near the Perth Children’s Hospital (PCH) - and across the entire metropolitan area - that their water supply meets all health related requirements and is completely safe for use.

We supply around 290 billion litres of clean, safe drinking water through the Integrated Water Supply Scheme to nearly two million people each year.

Each year we carry out more than 66,000 water samples at the water source, treatment locations and at points along the water supply network for microbiological, chemical and physical parameters that are analysed by independent laboratories, as agreed with Department of Health.

How do you know it is safe?

We previously carried out annual testing for lead in our water supply and this is supported by the Department of Health and consistent with advice from the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines, due to the very low risk in Perth.

However, in response to the issues at PCH we started additional testing near the PCH site, which indicated no detection of lead.

As a further precautionary measure, due to the public concern about PCH, we have also increased the frequency of testing for lead across the entire metropolitan area from an annual basis, to a quarterly basis.

Again, there were no detections of lead above guideline levels.

How is drinking water quality regulated?

The Department of Health regulates drinking water quality in Western Australia. The Department audits our water quality, management and reporting systems to ensure we consistently comply with Australian Drinking Water Guidelines.

Where in the water supply do you carry out testing?

In addition to on-line, continuous monitoring at our drinking water treatment plants, we carry out regular sampling at the water source, treatment locations and at points along the water supply network for microbiological, chemical and physical parameters.

These samples are analysed by independent laboratories.

As soon as we became aware of the PCH construction site lead issue in September 2016, we installed two additional sampling points on the Corporation’s supply into QEII at Monash Avenue and Aberdare Road.

In addition, past compliance sampling for lead within the Mt Eliza Zone was reviewed. These tests indicated no detection of lead.

Does Water Corporation supply the PCH site?

No, Water Corporation does not supply directly to the PCH.

The Water Corporation supplies to the QEII complex via 2 meters. The QEII site buildings, including PCH, are connected by a ‘ring main’ administered by Department of Health through a shared network of private pipes.

In Western Australia (and in most other parts of Australia), the responsibility of water suppliers ends at the point of supply to the customer, typically at the water meter.

The primary responsibility for ensuring that water supplied beyond the water meter remains safe rests with the building site owners/managers, plumbing and building regulators, plumbers, plumbing material suppliers or private individuals.

The ring main within the QEII site is beyond our water meter, and hence the quality of the water is the responsibility of the site owners.

How can I find out more information about drinking water quality?

Details and results from our extensive drinking water quality monitoring program can be found at www.watercorporation.com.au/about-us/our-performance/drinking-water-quality.

If anyone is concerned about their drinking water, call Water Corporation on 13 13 75.