SA Water has invested $1.6 million in new back-up generators at the Lower Eyre Peninsula to secure sewerage and water services in the area.

Six new portable 110 kVA diesel generator units are available for emergency deployment for the 2017-2018 summer period to power production bores in the Uley Basin borefield, which is the primary source of drinking water for the Lower Peninsula.

Another 1250 kVA unit has also been ordered to power the Uley South and Duckponds Pump Stations to help maintain reserve levels in storage tanks and water pressure across the distribution network.

SA Water Customer Field Services Manager for the Eyre Peninsula, Paul Zanelli, said SA Water’s people and operations were impacted by the 2016 statewide blackout.

“During the blackout, our Eyre team worked around the clock in wild weather conditions, using hired or borrowed equipment to successfully maintain uninterrupted water and sewage removal services,” Mr Zanelli said.

“Despite the testing conditions, the team ensured the region’s water and sewerage services were one less thing to be concerned about.

“Investing in this new fleet of generators means Lower EP residents can rest assured that water and sewerage will remain the reliable constant, should a serious electricity interruption happen again.”

Water and sewerage are essential services that rely on power for pumping, to make sure clean, safe water keeps making its way to customers’ taps for drinking, and wastewater is pumped away afterwards for treatment.

The generators will be permanently positioned ahead of next summer, with those at Uley Basin automatically starting if power is lost, while the larger unit will be manually controlled by the local SA Water team.

The strategic placement of the new generators will work in combination with the local water network’s gravity-fed components, to ensure supply can be maintained throughout the Lower Eyre Peninsula.

“Although it was a challenging experience, key learnings from the blackout have resulted in initiatives like this which have improved our preparedness and resilience,” Mr Zanelli said. 

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