Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Council Plans Return To Makotuku For Raetihi Water

Ruapehu District Council (RDC) is preparing to return the water source for Raetihi to the Makotuku River which was contaminated by a diesel spill in October last year.

The spill from a faulty tank supplying the Turoa ski field on Mt Ruapehu leaked 19,000 litres of diesel into the Makotuku River forcing RDC to switch the water source for Raetihi township to the Makara Stream.

A major multi-agency civil defence response effort was required in response to the spill including the provision of emergency drinking water supplies for two weeks while Raetihi was without potable reticulated (tap) water.

RDC Chief Executive, Peter Till, said that Horizons Regional Council (Horizons) which has had responsibility for cleaning-up the diesel spill in the Makotuku River has advised that it has decontaminated as much of the river as possible.

“Horizons states that there is still some diesel contamination trapped within the scree slopes on Mt Ruapehu that has been deemed to be impractical to recover,” he said.

“There is a risk that some of the trapped diesel finds its way into the Makotuku during significant rain events.”

Mr Till said that to manage this issue RDC has installed a hydrocarbon sensor on the raw water line from the Makotuku River feeding the Raetihi water treatment plant settling ponds.

“The diesel sensor is incredibly sensitive and during testing has been able to detect less than one fifth of a teaspoon of diesel in 20 litres of water.”

“When diesel is detected by the hydrocarbon sensor the raw water line is automatically shut-off to prevent any contaminated water entering the settling ponds and an alarm is sent to an on-call operator.”

“The settling ponds and tank hold a day’s worth of water usage and council is able to switch back to the Makara Stream as a raw water source within hours ensuring water supply to the township is not affected,” he said.

“Testing of the hydrocarbon sensor and other new systems installed since the diesel contamination have been very encouraging.”

“However before we switch back to the Makotuku River as a raw water source we want to test the sensor during more adverse weather conditions than we have had lately.”

Mr Till said that council hoped to be able to advise a target date for the switch back to the Makotuku at the next Waimarino Waiouru Community Board meeting on Thursday 13th February.

“Before the switch over council is planning a public meeting and open day to allow the Raetihi community to see the new systems first hand and ask any questions they may have,” he said.

Mr Till noted that despite the investments and upgrades made to Raetihi’s water treatment plant and reticulated network since the diesel contamination there are still significant outstanding issues.

“It needs to be recognised that this is only a medium term solution at best,” he said.

“Over summer council staff have been preparing for a meeting to discuss alternative water sources for Raetihi.”

“Major components of the Raetihi water treatment plant and reticulated network are coming to the end of their predicted useful life.”

“For example the raw water line from the Tohonga Junction to the Raetihi Reservoir which suffered two breaks in a week this month is estimated to cost around $2 million dollars to replace along its current route.”

“Ohakune’s water treatment plant has similar issues with aging plant and as such all Waimarino communities will shortly need to start working alongside council to investigate long term options for their potable water.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Patience: Drive Safe

Be patient before passing is the AA's message for drivers this Labour weekend.

"People taking crazy risks to get past other vehicles is one of the most dangerous things on the road,” says AA spokesperson Dylan Thomsen.

“The weather is looking good for the long weekend so the roads will be busy. Unfortunately, that also increases the chances of people getting frustrated and trying a risky passing manoeuvre. When they get past, there will probably be more traffic up ahead anyway so it won’t get people there faster.” More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news