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Operation storm New Plymouth update

Operation storm New Plymouth update: Water in taps in Waitara, Highlands Park and Lepperton but keep boiling and saving it

9:30am, Saturday 24 February

· Fix-It squads have been working hard and water is back in taps in Waitara, Highlands Park and Lepperton.

· But it’s critical residents continue to boil and save water.

· Hundreds of volunteers have been on these streets, from dawn to dusk, stand piping* as we look to slowly refill pipes while controlling the pressure.

· Fix-It squads are now on the ground in Bell Block.

· Residents in these areas are being asked to turn on their outside tap first, as water is returned to homes. If the water is murky please keep the tap running for ten minutes until it becomes clear. If it does not become clear after ten minutes, please turn the tap off and try again in half an hour.

· We are making solid progress towards restoring water but there is still a lot of work to do, following the New Plymouth water pipe being damaged during ex Cyclone Gita on Tuesday night.

· Once water is restored there will be several days of flushing the pipes clean, so we can make the water safe to drink again.

· It will take about a week until we are in a position to lift the boil water notice.

* Stand piping involves manually removing the lid of fire hydrants, and installing a vertical pipe (stand pipe) which allows air and water to escape the system as it is gradually refilled. We need to do this slowly so we can control the pressure, venting the air from the pipes as water rushes in. People will see water coming out of the pipe and this is an important safety measure; confirming the pipes are full of water and we are controlling the pressure. Each stand piping takes several hours.


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