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Citycare Water is working with the Christchurch City Council (CCC) to improve the safety of the city’s public water supply by reducing the threat of contamination by backflow.
Presently Citycare Water’s Construction Team is installing 230 backflow prevention devices outside private businesses as part of the CCC water safety improvement plan, Maintenance Operations Manager Alan Gramstrup says.
So what is backflow? It’s when water from private property enters the public supply due to a pressure change causing water to either be sucked backwards or pushed into the public supply.
Because homes and businesses use chemicals and other potential contaminants, backflow can threaten people's health and wellbeing. For more information see: https://ccc.govt.nz/services/water-and-drainage/water-supply/backflow-prevention
The water safety improvement plan requires all commercial and high-risk properties to have effective backflow prevention devices fitted on their water supply line at the boundary to prevent any contamination from properties re-entering the CCC reticulation system.
There are various sizes of backflow prevention devices being installed by three Construction crews, depending on the pipe set-up at individual businesses, Alan says.
Once the backflow prevention devices are installed, they are checked annually by specialist Citycare Water technicians.
The Water Reticulation Maintenance Team is also currently supporting the Council’s water network maintenance programme by replacing 6,000 aged meter connections to residential properties, Alan says.
Labourer Mitch Thompson installs a backflow prevention device outside a Hornby business; The variety of backflow prevention devices being installed in Christchurch.
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When Christchurch residents report an issue with their water, various Citycare Water teams step in to ensure the problem is repaired in a timely way.
Thousands of residents report water reticulation problems in Christchurch each month and prioritising the fixes is a continuous exemplar of collaboration between the council and Citycare Water.