Sunwater has issued an alert for anyone receiving drinking water from the Fairbairn Dam water supply to boil the tap water used for drinking due to the water being produced with an elevated turbidity level.
Sunwater has issued an alert for anyone receiving drinking water from the Fairbairn Dam water supply to boil the tap water used for drinking due to the water being produced with an elevated turbidity level.

Sunwater issues alert for users of Fairbairn Dam water

UPDATE 2.30PM: Central Highlands Regional Council has advised that there is no need for Emerald, Blackwater and Bluff residents to boil drinking water from council’s town water supply.

Sunwater issued a drinking water boil alert for residents and visitors at Fairbairn Dam who received water directly from the dam via Sunwater’s treatment plant.

While these towns source water from the Fairbairn Dam, council has not experienced the same turbidity issue as the local water supply at the dam.

INITIAL: Sunwater has issued an alert for anyone receiving drinking water from the Fairbairn Dam water supply following an issue identified at the dam.

All residents and visitors have been advised to boil the tap water used for drinking due to the water being produced with an elevated turbidity level, which may have resulted in cloudiness of the water.

“No contaminants of direct health concern have been detected, however Sunwater has notified the office of the water supply regulator and has taken the step of issuing this notice as a precaution to reduce the risk of potential illness,” a spokesman said.

“Sunwater has issued this notice as a precaution and is undertaking a series of actions to investigate and rectify the cause of the issue.”

The boil water alert will stay in effect until Sunwater is confident there is no longer a public health concern.

Consuming unboiled drinking water could lead to illness, especially for vulnerable people (those who are very young, elderly or immunocompromised), Sunwater revealed in a statement.

People should use cooled, boiled water or bottled water for:

  • drinking
  • brushing teeth
  • washing and preparing food or beverages
  • preparing baby formula
  • making ice
  • bathing infants

Unboiled drinking water can be used for:

  • showering and bathing other than infants (but minimise water in the mouth)
  • washing dishes by hand or in a dishwasher, provided dishes are air-dried
  • washing clothes
  • flushing toilets

People should bring drinking water to a boil and then allow it to cool before using it or storing it in a clean, closed container for later use.

Kettles with automatic cut-off switches are suitable for producing boiled water. Variable temperature kettles should be set to boil.

If you are concerned about your health contact 13 HEALTH (13 43 25 84), a doctor or local hospital and advise them of your concerns.

If you have any further concerns please contact Peter Simpson, Fairbairn Dam Senior Operator Maintainer, Sunwater by calling 0459 839 917.

Originally published as Sunwater issues alert for users of Fairbairn Dam water