Thursday, 1 April 2021

Carterton District Council urgently advises Carterton urban residents and businesses on town supply to boil all water effective 2pm Thursday 1 April. This means boiling all water before being used for drinking, making baby formula, juice, ice, washing fruit and vegetables, other food preparation/cooking needs, or brushing teeth. This will remain in place until further notice, with the Council advising that residents should not expect it to be lifted for at least seven days while a thorough investigation into the cause takes place, and remediation work can be carried out.

Last week, the Council lifted its boil water notice after locating a potential faulty valve which resulted in a low-level E. coli bacteria reading in its town supply. Despite repairing the valve and increasing the flushing regime by 50 per cent, the Council received a low-level E. coli reading in one of our sampling points in Fisher Place at around 1pm. The Drinking Water Standard for New Zealand require E.Coli levels to be less than 1 MPN/100ml (Most Probable Number). Today’s sample reading was at 1 MPN/100ml. The risk to the community is extremely low but the Council is taking a precautionary approach.

Experts in water and wastewater Lutra will continue the investigation alongside Council.

“The Council team have eliminated a number of potential contamination sources and have located and fixed two probable contamination sources,” said Lutra Chief Executive, Jason Colton.

“This latest positive result shows that there is least one other potential contamination source in the water supply network that needs to be located and rectified. This is proving challenging to locate.”

The council’s Infrastructure, Services and Regulatory Manager Dave Gittings said the Council was extremely disappointed and surprised to receive another low-level E. coli reading but is confident the risk to the community is low.

“We do appreciate how frustrating this will be for our residents over the long weekend.”

“We have alerted the District Health Board and the local medical centre as a precaution and we are taking all steps necessary to keep our community safe.

“We urge people to follow the boil water instructions and to check on your neighbours and older family members.”

Water has been made available from outside the Carterton Event Centre from 3pm.

The risk of getting sick from drinking the water is low but possible, especially for vulnerable people. Babies, young children, pregnant women, the elderly and people who have weakened immune systems are more at risk of illness. If you get diarrhoea, vomiting and/or a fever, get advice from your doctor or contact Healthline (0800 611 116).


How to boil water for drinking:

  • Boiling will kill all disease-causing organisms.
  • Bring water to a rolling boil (where bubbles appear in the centre and do not disappear when the water is stirred) for one minute or boil a full electric jug until it switches off
  • Cool water (do not use ice cubes to do this) and pour into clean container with a lid
  • Refrigerate until needed.

If you experience diarrhoea, vomiting and/or a fever, contact your doctor or Healthline (0800 611 116).

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