Victorians have been slammed again.
In the middle of a strict COVID-19 lockdown, last night’s storm caused 99 Melbourne suburbs to be issued with a ‘Do Not Drink’ notice : https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-08-28/yarra-valley-water-users-told-to-boil-water-after-storms/12605930, and https://www.3aw.com.au/do-not-drink-contaminated-water-warning-for-88-melbourne-suburbs/
More than 250,000 households have been affected but from available information, it seems the ‘Do Not Drink’ warning was issued on a precautionary basis, because undisinfected water was allowed to enter the drinking water network. On radio, a Yarra Valley Water spokesperson noted that the risk of contamination is very low – largely due to the quality of the catchment from which the water is sourced. But as we know, risk is defined as the impact of uncertainty on objectives – in this case, protection of public health.
What if the ‘Do Not Drink’ warning had been underpinned with near-real-time information on the bacterial health of the water, to increase the certainty of decision-making and incident management?
A VWMS Coliminder® installed at the inlet and another at the outlet of the drinking water treatment plant would have detected any increase in bacterial activity in the incoming raw water and/or in the treated water, and immediately sent alerts to the relevant personnel, allowing them to manage the public health risk on a more proactive, timely and sound basis.
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Contact us or learn more about the Coliminder® here