Dirty water woes leave Eton mum out of pocket
EVERY morning Brenda Belford-Bartho goes through the motions of unscrewing the filters on the taps around her home and cleaning out the gunk.
For the past month, the Eton resident has had sediment in her tap water to the point where she refuses to let her family drink it or cook with it.
Instead, the mother of six buys bottled drinking water from the supermarket, an exercise she said was costing her a fortune.
"It all started just before the school holidays started in December when the Mackay Regional Council sent us a notice to say there would be interruptions to our water supply as they were doing some work to the mains," Mrs Belford-Bartho said.
"Since then we had had this gross sediment that looks like lime scale and white calcium build-up in our water which is also quite sharp.
"It's just gross. I have to go around to all my taps each morning, unscrew the filters and clean out the muck.
"We buy water to drink and cook in now and it is costing me hand over fist. It costs us over $100 per week."
Mrs Belford-Bartho said the sediment had wreaked havoc on her plumbing and had prevented her children from enjoying some summer activities.
"It's gritty, it's sharp and it's hard. It feels like crushed sea shell," she said.
"It has caused problems with our toilet. It's got to a point where it has actually blocked the intake cistern and we've had to clean it out. My husband has to keep cleaning out my washing machine which is only new and I have to keep taking the shower heads off and cleaning them out.
"It's causing a whole pile of misery. I wish I could set the slip and slide up for the kids but I won't because it would cut them open."
Water and Waste chief operating officer Nicole Davis said MRC had received two complaints from the same resident about the issue.
Dr Davis said the council was working with to investigate.
"We've had a field services staff member on site Tuesday to clean the resident's aerators," she said.
"Another staff member attended on Thursday and some samples have been taken for analysis.
"We'll continue to work with the resident to resolve the matter."
Dr Davis said the council planned a water mains cleaning program in the Eton area in February.
"(The) council has also allocated $650,000 in this year's budget to build a new bore system to help reduce the hardness of the town's water supply," she said.
"The new third bore will include a 'shandy' process, combining its water with supply from Eton's existing bore No.1, and will include a softening unit."