Water Quality Analysis

Drinking Water Monitoring Program Data

Please click on the links below to view the data of the Drinking Water Monitoring Programs conducted for the Bundarra and Uralla town water supplies. Results compiled show data for the past 10 years.

Bundarra Drinking Water Monitoring Program Data(PDF, 151KB)

Uralla Drinking Water Monitoring Program Data(PDF, 151KB)

Upgrade Works at the Uralla Water Treatment Plant

27 April 2020 

As at Monday, 27 April 2020 the "Do Not Drink Alert" for the Uralla town water supply has been lifted. 

Read the Public Notice here.

24 April 2020

Council staff have now installed and tested drainage and air scour filter pipework, following removal of  the original filter media at the Uralla Water Treatment Plant. 

Installation of the new filter media with Granular Activated Carbon (GAC) has also been completed for filter No.2 with treated water currently being filtered through the GAC filter with performance results expected within the next week.

17 April 2020

Our staff are progressing with the repairs needed at the Uralla Water Treatment Plant with all replacement air scour parts received and under construction for testing. Filter under drains have also been repaired and are ready for testing.

The filter support media and the Granular Activated Carbon (GAC) received last week is expected to be installed next week with testing able to commence soon after.

Test results of the treated water continue to show arsenic levels below the 0.010mg Australian Drinking Water Guideline and are controlled at around 0.004ppm.  The latest test results indicated that the compliant water was also present in parts of the Uralla town water reticulation.

 

09 April 2020

Our staff are progressing with the repairs needed prior to the installation of the Granular Activated Carbon (GAC), with the expectation of completing these repairs by mid April.  The filter support media and the Granular Activated Carbon (GAC) has now been received at the Uralla Water Treatment Plant.

Test results of the treated water continue to show arsenic levels below the 0.010mg Australian Drinking Water Guideline and are controlled at around 0.004ppm.  The latest test results indicated that the compliant water was also present in parts of the Uralla town water reticulation.

Unrestricted use of water over Easter break  will assist in flushing the town’s reticulation system of any water with elevated levels of arsenic. Residents will temporarily be able to water lawns and gardens as well as wash their cars, driveways and houses from midnight on Thursday, 9th of April 2020 until 11:59pm on Monday, 13th of April 2020.  The unrestricted use of water will assist in flushing the town’s reticulation system of any water with elevated levels of arsenic.

 

03 April 2020

Our staff have now removed the sand filter media to gain access to the underdrains and air scouring system in preparation for the repairs needed prior to the installation of the Granular Activated Carbon (GAC).

Unfortunately, suppliers continue to be delayed with the GAC and filter support media expected on Friday, 27th of March 2020 now expected early next week.

Test results of the treated water are continuing to show arsenic levels below the 0.010mg Australian Drinking Water Guideline and are controlled at around 0.004ppm.

While the upgrade works are in progress, the Uralla Water Treatment Plant will continue to operate at the level 5 restriction production rate. To assist with flushing the system of contaminated water, residents are able to use water in their gardens and wash their cars between the hours of 6pm and 7pm daily.

 

25 March 2020

Upgrade works at the Uralla Water Treatment Plant continue with delivery of the Granular Activated Carbon (GAC) filter media expected on Friday, 27th March 2020. In anticipation of this, Council staff have commenced the process to remove the sand filter media from the filters at the Treatment Plant. Works on the filters will be undertaken separately.

Prior to the installation of the GAC, the backwash and air-scour pipework will be inspected and repaired or replaced if necessary.

Adjustments to the chemical dosing and flow rate, combined with the dilution of the raw water from recent rains, have provided initial test results of treated water showing arsenic below the 0.010 mg/L Australian Drinking Water Guideline limit..

Additional testing will be undertaken throughout the works process to ensure that results observed at the plant and within the reticulation are consistently compliant and within the Guidelines.

Upgrade works at the Uralla Water Treatment Plant will include the installation of an on-line arsenic meter. This will allow real-time notification to alert Council to any future elevated arsenic levels in the raw and treated water in addition to Council’s usual water testing schedule.

While the upgrade works are in progress, the Uralla Water Treatment Plant will continue to operate at the level 5 restriction production rate. To assist with flushing the system of contaminated water, residents are able to use water in their gardens and wash their cars between the hours of 6pm and 7pm daily. For further details, please refer to Council’s Media Release dated 25 March 2020.

upgrades-at-UWTP.jpg

Removal of the sand filter media as part of the upgrade works at the Uralla Water Treatment Plant.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is there arsenic in the Uralla Town Water Supply?

The elevated levels of arsenic in the water supply is originating from groundwater entering the tributaries which flow into the Kentucky Creek Dam, which were the primary inflows into the Dam while the dam storage levels were low. These elevated levels of arsenic in the raw water supply has resulted in higher than usual concentrations of arsenic going through the treatment plant.

What is the difference between raw water and treated water?

Raw water is the untreated water contained in the Kentucky Creek Dam. Treated water refers to the town water supply which has been treated at the Uralla Water Treatment Plant.

Why is there more arsenic in the raw water supply?

The concentration of arsenic is higher in the raw water supply before it is treated at the Uralla Treatment Plant. While the treatment processes currently cannot remove all of the arsenic present in the water, the current treatment processes in place do remove some of the arsenic and therefore treated town water has a lower level than the raw water supply. The arsenic test data has been posted on here.

How is the arsenic going to be removed?

In conjunction with treatment specialists from the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment – Water, Council has now commenced the improvements to the Uralla Treatment Plant. The upgrade plan involves replacing the sand in the water treatment plant’s filtration system with Granular Activated Carbon filter media to remove the inorganic arsenic compounds and pre-dosing the raw water entering the plant with ferric chloride to remove the organic arsenic compounds. This approach uses the existing sand filters at the water treatment plant. Council will not be installing the bank of Granular Activated Carbon filters originally considered.

Why is it taking so long to remove the arsenic from the water?

Council has needed to change its strategy of how to remove arsenic from the water supply as more information has been obtained. Any upgrades to the Water Treatment Plant must be practical and successful both now and for the future removal of arsenic should levels become elevated with a reduction in the storage level in Kentucky Creek Dam. Rigorous testing will be required once the solution has been implemented to ensure water quality is consistently within safe levels.

Are there other elements in the Uralla water supply?

Arsenic is the only element in the Uralla water supply which does not meet the Australian Drinking Water Guidelines. Trace amounts of other minerals are present in the water supply, however these are all within acceptable levels. 

Uralla Water Supply Arsenic Test Data

Arsenic Test Data

The table below shows the most recent arsenic test results conducted for the Uralla town water supply. Please click here for the cumulative Uralla town water supply arsenic test data.

Testing Agency
Sample ID Sample Area
Sample Date
Soluble Arsenic
(mg/L)
Total Arsenic
(mg/L)
Test Date
NSW Health Pathology (FASS)
2020002704 WTP01 - Raw 8/09/2020 0.003 0.005 9/09/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS)
2020002705 WTP02 - Settled 8/09/2020 0.001 0.001 9/09/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS)
2020002706 WTP06 - Filtered   8/09/2020 0.001 <0.001 9/09/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS)
2020002911
WTP01 - Raw
6/10/2020
0.005 0.006 8/10/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS) 2020002912
WTP02 - Settled
6/10/2020
0.001 0.001 8/10/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS) 2020002913
WTP03 - Final
6/10/2020
0.001 0.001 8/10/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS) 2020003031
WTP01 - Raw
20/10/2020
 - 0.006 21/10/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS) 2020003032  
WTP02 - Settled
20/10/2020
 - 0.002 21/10/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS)   2020003033
WTP06 - Filtered
20/10/2020
 - 0.001 21/10/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS)
2020003167
WTP01 - Raw 3/11/2020  - 0.009 4/11/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS)
2020003168
WTP02 - Settled
3/11/2020  - 0.001 4/11/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS)
2020003169
WTP03 - Final
3/11/2020  - 0.001 4/11/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS)
2020003289
WTP01 - Raw 17/11/2020 0.010 0.011 18/11/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS) 2020003290
WTP02 - Settled 17/11/2020 0.001 0.001 18/11/2020
NSW Health Pathology (FASS) 2020003291 WTP03 - Final 17/11/2020 0.001 0.001 18/11/2020

 

Test Location Maps 

Click on each map to enlarge.

test-location-map-01.jpg(JPG, 37KB)

WTP04 and WTP05

 

test-location-map-02.jpg(JPG, 58KB)

TP01 - TP09

test-location-map-03.jpg(JPG, 49KB)

WTP01, WTP02, WTP03, WTP06