Water situation: Few days of disruption for Lautoka residents

RESIDENTS in elevated areas of Lautoka are advised to store up on water from tonight as major repair works begin on a leaking water pipeline near the Vaturu dam.

The Water Authority of Fiji says the repair work will be carried out in two to three days and will result in a partial shutdown at the Nagado water treatment plant.

The major repair work will be carried out on the leaking 711mm MSCL tee along the Vaturu-Nagado high-pressure raw water pipeline at Batiri, near the Vaturu Dam.

WAF general manager Customer Services and acting GM Operations Sekove Uluinayau said all preparatory works had been undertaken.

“WAF is ready to undertake the partial water shutdown at the Nagado water treatment plant to carry out the urgent repair works upstream near the Vaturu dam,” Mr Uluinayau said.

“Our contractors are also geared up to carry out the repairs. The leakage is suspected to have started from the welding joints and this has deteriorated, causing WAF to lose approximately one mega litre per day,” he said.

“The repair works on the leaking tee is very critical at this stage as the leakage is seen to be deteriorating from the past few weeks and would be catastrophic to WAF should the leakage increase or the entire tee connection fails, thus resulting in major disruption in water supply to the customers in Nadi and Lautoka area.

“Our teams have worked round the clock to place a total of 100 water tanks in nearly all the villagers and communities, which will be facing water disruptions from Thursday evening into Friday morning.

“Additionally, we have a total of 19 water carting trucks that will be deployed to refill these water tanks and to cart water to customers.”

Residents and customers in the greater Lautoka area are advised to begin storing their back-up supply now before 10 pm tonight (Thursday, April 18).

“I urge the residents of Lautoka to please store your share of back-up water supply – based on our calculations, customers are to please store at least 200litres to sustain you and your family during the disruption period.

“Do not wait for the eleventh hour as experiences from the previous water shutdowns saw many residents filling their share of water in the last minute and some were disappointed as water pressures had drastically dropped due to the sudden surge of customers all opening their taps at once.”

Customers are advised to contact the authority’s National Contact Centre on 1507 or email waterhelp@waf.com.fj for any clarification or water carting assistance.

During the repair and restoration period, water supply will be disrupted to elevated residential areas of Lautoka from tonight until 6 am on Tuesday, April 23.

The repair work will be undertaken by WAF contractors Elisha Engineering Co. Limited with works carried out for a continuous 24 hours.

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