Byron Shire Council is coming to the aid of rural residents who are currently waiting over five weeks to receive drinking water. The Council has now repurposed one of its water carting trucks for drinking water delivery to assist residents who are running short of water.
‘The community came to us about the undersupply of water carting services in the Byron Shire and lengthy times people were waiting for deliveries,’ Council’s director infrastructure services, Phil Holloway said.
‘People in our rural areas were in desperate and urgent need of water for their tanks that had essentially dried up – which is pretty dire.
‘Council has two water carting trucks that it deploys for use during roadworks and we saw an opportunity to repurpose one of the trucks to carry potable water for drinking supply during drought conditions to assist our community,” he said.
‘Carrying drinking water is a serious business and you need to meet strict health standards and rules that are set by NSW Health, so we have been going through the process of refitting the truck so that it is safe and approved to be used for this purpose,’ he said.
Council with be able to cart 12,000L per trip at a cost of $350. Council are planning to continue the provision of the service until the drought breaks.
‘Offering this service is one way we can assist the community in drought times and while we have had some recent rain, Council sees this as a longer-term way it can help our rural community over what is expected to be a dry summer.
‘While we won’t be running it as a commercial enterprise, our fee for service will need to be set to cover our costs,’ Mr Holloway said.
Council’s water carting service will operate seven days a week until the drought breaks. Bookings can be made from Monday, 9 December by calling the Byron Shire Council Depot on 6685 9319 during office hours.