Water woes worry town
YET another water issue is causing ripple effects in the small township of Pratten - but this time it's about quantity, not quality.
Jean Andersen is a landlord who rents out a home near the centre of the town and she has complained to the Southern Downs Regional Council about the water supply for the past 18 months.
She said Pratten's town water pressure was so weak, water was barely reaching the shed of her tenant's property, let alone the house.
Her complaint comes after the Daily News reported other residents' concerns about the quality of the bore water - specifically its colour, smell and contents - last week.
Ms Andersen said the situation was so dire her tenants were forced to cart water from their water meter to their home for 10 weeks to get their basic requirements.
"The (town) reservoir or tank council was using to pump water into was too big for the pump they were using, and the pump or tank was leaking," she said.
"They turned the pressure down so much (to stop the leaking) that the water only ran to the end of the driveway.
"Sometimes it ran through to the home, but only ever a dribble."
Council loaned the tenants a tank and pump, but that favour is due to expire by the end of the month.
Ms Andersen said the most frustrating issue was that water had been supplied to the home 18 months ago, before council had dropped the pressure in the central water system.
She said she had had various plumbers out to assess the situation but all had told her there was nothing that could be done from her end of the water line.
In his correspondence with Ms Andersen, council CEO Rod Ferguson said changes to the pump pressure were made "for the good of the overall system" and to prevent loss of water that occurred at the higher pressure.
"The reduction in pressure was only about 10%, but with your house some distance uphill from the meter and your storage tank off the ground this has resulted in the reduced pressure not being sufficient to allow flow into your tank," Mr Ferguson told Ms Andersen.
A council spokeswoman said council was responsible for delivering water to the property's meter or fence line but it was up to the owner to deliver water to the home.
"The most recent water reading at this property showed water was being delivered to this property at well over the minimum pressure standard required," she said.
"As this property is high up on a hill, there may be a need for the owner to pump the water to her house from the meter."
The spokeswoman said the town's central tank did not need to be replaced at present and as far as she could gather, did not appear to leak.
Council identified a significant leak in the line near Ms Andersen's property in September, which may have affected the pressure on two properties, the spokeswoman added.
This leak has now been fixed.
Rumours that the filter at Pratten was a second-hand one once used at the WIRAC pool have been quashed by council - instead the filter is the one formerly used at Yangan.
Council's Gary Palmer said he believed the filter at Yangan had to be upgraded to a larger size, and was given to Pratten.