HDD, Tunnelling

Shepparton watermains bursting for repairs

Over 150 watermain bursts or leaks occurring in Shepparton in the past year have led to a project to replace nearly 4.5 km of the town’s watermain infrastructure from January through to April 2014.

The Shepparton watermain replacement schedule is part of an extensive watermain replacement program being continued across the Goulburn Valley Water region in an effort to reduce leaks and bursts and improve supplies for its growing population.

Goulburn Valley Water Operations Manager Steve Nash said the utility is constantly facing the challenges presented by ageing infrastructure, with many hundreds of kilometres of the Goulburn Valley Water watermain network originally laid nearly 100 years ago.

“The unlined cast iron, concrete and cement mains laid back as far as the 1920s are susceptible to ground movement and crack and crumble as they age, causing leaks, bursts and sometimes water quality issues,” he said.

“Due to the high failure rate in these old mains, our teams have responded to over 500 watermain bursts or leaks across our entire region in the past 12 months,” said Mr Nash.

Goulburn Valley Water Manager Asset/Project Delivery Glenn Bewicke said the watermain replacement program was part of the five year Water Plan outlined to the Essential Services Commission.

“The upgrade program will see more than $12 million spent upgrading watermains over the upcoming five year Water Plan period,” said Mr Bewicke.

“During this time we will replace more than 46 km of ageing watermain and would expect these sections of pipe to last at least another 100 years.”

The new watermains will be constructed from a selection of modern pipe materials such as unplasticised polyvinyl chloride, polyethelene and ductile iron.

Goulburn Valley Water will be working in partnership with contractor DKM Utility Services to deliver this work.

Works will continue until April.

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