Water utility Rous County Council will install a new public water filling station in Bangalow and a commercial bulk filling station nearby, to help meet the soaring local demand for water.
The new public filling station, one of two to be installed by Rous Council in its coverage area, will be located in the Bangalow industrial estate.
The station will be operated by credit card, with users charged $5.75 per kilolitre, with a limit of 3.5 kilolitres per transaction.
Installed at a cost of around $45,000, it is expected to be operational early in the new year (2020).
A staff report to the December 11 Council meeting says there are ‘multiple enquiries each day from customers looking for public access points to the water supply to fill up smaller containers and 1,000L Intermediate Bulk Containers (IBC).
‘Many of these customers are looking to collect their own water as they are unable to source an available water carter in a timely manner, owing to the high demand’.
The location of the bulk filling station is yet to be finalised, but Rous Council says it will be located somewhere in the area around Eureka and Bangalow. It is expected to take between six to eight weeks to be operational, and will service commercial water carters only.
A public filling station and a bulk filling station will also be installed at locations to the north and south of Lismore respectively.
Rous Council said that the new water stations were necessary to meet the rapidly growing demand from people who were not connected to town water.
The December 11 report to Council’s meeting added the number of litres purchased through commercial water cart operators in November was more than twice that purchased just two months earlier, increasing to 53.3 million litres.
As a consequence, wait times for those ordering water had ballooned, with customers waiting anywhere between two and six weeks for water.
Water carters have been waiting up to two hours at fill stations as multiple trucks queue to get water.
This story was amended after Rous alerted The Echo that the Bangalow water station was to open in the new year, not December 23.