Calliope loses a million litres of water a day


CALLIOPE Shire Council water engineers have detected an 18 per cent loss of water ? more than one million litres each day.

In a report to council on Friday water and sewerage manager Craig Murrell said a water loss analysis was carried out after meter readings conducted in March.

"Broadly speaking this analysis provided an overall water loss for the entire shire of 17.9 per cent,'' he said.

"This is an improvement on last year's water losses, which were in the vicinity of 25 per cent.

He said reducing the losses "is a long-term objective, as a quick fix is not possible''.

Mr Murrell said small leaks were harder to detect than bursts and overflows where the water was more likely to be visible. The council expects that new detection equipment would make this task easier.

Water losses can occur through leaks, for fire fighting, flushing of the systems and and at domestic meters which often under-read (an example of a loss that is apparent, not real).

Some losses, such as for firefighting, were unavoidable and could not be recovered.

Mr Murrell said council's water loss management strategies met the new legislative requirements.

He said reporting water losses in terms of percentage of total water was not error proof, as during periods of low consumption (for instance drought), losses were higher. This was because water continued to be lost regardless of the amount of consumption.

Because of this council, in keeping with best practice convention, is to report losses differently in the future. This will be in terms of real losses, infrastructure leaking index, current annual real losses, and unavoidable annual real losses.

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