Heathcote residents to meet with Coliban Water about chlorine smell, discolouration

UPDATE THURSDAY 9am: Heavy rainfalls in 2016 are being blamed for problems with the water quality in Heathcote. 

Coliban water quality performance manager David Sheehan said deluges that caused Lake Eppalock to increase in capacity from 20 per cent to 100 per cent very quickly adversely affected raw water quality.

The town’s supply was switched to the Sandhurst water storage recently, but Mr Sheehan said some of the old water – which customers report smells and tastes like chlorine, and is discoloured – remained in the system. 

“We are working to treat this water in the system and this takes time,” Mr Sheehan said. 

“When the raw water being supplied to the treatment plant changes, we need to adjust our treatment processes to adapt this.” 

EARLIER: Coliban Water will hold town meetings in Heathcote this week to hose down residents’ concerns about the quality of their drinking water.

Customers who have complained their tap water is coloured brown and smelling of chlorine can meet water company staff at the Heathcote Guide Hall between 3pm and 6pm this Friday, January 13, and on Monday, January 16.    

A Coliban spokesperson said on Wednesday the raw water source that supplies the Heathcote Township was changed from Lake Eppalock to the Sandhurst water storage to address taste and odour issues.

The water does not pose a risk to customers health, they said.  

Still, it could take as long as two weeks for water quality to improve.