Riverton water under scrutiny

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    Southland mother Rebecca Bevi, with her son Emmerson (8 months), shows the discoloured water from her tap. Photo: Luisa Girao

    A SOUTHLAND mother does not have the courage to give her two children tap water from their Riverton home.

    Rebecca Bevin said the presence of lime scale and the discolouration of the water worries her family and other residents.

    “I don’t have any idea of how much money we have spent on bottled water, but I would not dare give this water to my kids.”

    She said even after she boiled it, the water still looked blurry.

    Her mother Jayne Hall said this was not a new issue for Riverton residents, but she believed it had never been worse.

    “It is not all the time, but still, it shouldn’t be like this – rusty. I never drink water from the tap as it does not taste very nice.”

    Last month, Mrs Hall sent a photo of the discoloured water in a jug to the Southland District Council, receiving a reply saying the council did not find any issue with the quality.

    “That’s fair, but the water did not look or taste nice. In this day and age, we should have a decent water supply. That is what I want – water that looks like, and tastes like, clean water.”

    Other residents have also complained about the water quality via social media.

    Some have asked if was fair to pay 8c for each $1 in rates towards the water supply, was it reasonable to get “disgusting water”?

    A Southland District Council spokesperson said the Three Waters team was investigating the Riverton water supply.

    “There are two main concerns which have been raised by residents – the presence of lime scale and the discolouration of the water itself. While these two are an aesthetic issue, neither of these factors present a health risk.

    “The water supply was tested twice a week at the source, and once a week within the network and the treatment plant.”

    No E-Coli had been found and public health was their “primary concern”, he said.

    Because of the complaints, Southland District Council Mayor Gary Tong has scheduled a meeting with the residents tomorrow to address the issue.

    “I personally did not get many complaints, but I know residents are not happy and have raised their concerns.

    “It’s time to go through the facts, understand and find what we can do.”

    Mrs Hall has kept a jug with water from her tap to offer to him to try.

    “Do you think he would? I really don’t know.”

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