VAKABULI residents of Lautoka have been facing water problems as a result of a damaged water main.
About 15 households had to spend a few days retrieving water from nearby water sources after a vital main was damaged by contracted gravel diggers near the Vakabuli River.
Vakabuli advisory councillor Shamshad Ali said the incident was not the first time the gravel extractors had damaged the main.
"This is the third time they have done this. The first time was in May and we had to live without water for several days while repairs were done.
"Every time this happens, it is done by a contractor but our main concern is they are not listening to our pleas for them to take care when extracting gravel."
When the link was damaged on the third occasion, Mr Ali said he visited the company to inform them of the location of the water main, which was situated close to the river.
"I had to call the Water Authority of Fiji officials on Christmas for their help and by Boxing Day, they had come with about 14 men to fix the damaged pipe.
"I am very grateful to government and to the authorities for sparing their holiday to repair the damaged pipe. But I think that it is unfair that these private firms are damaging these pipes and government has to step in and repair them."
Mr Ali hoped the problem would not happen again when the contractors return to work today.