Ironing out water woes

Beruschi Road properties to be connected to main water line following high levels of iron in tests

A resident’s concerns regarding levels of iron in his water were addressed during city council on Oct. 24.

Council voted unanimously to approve that properties on Beruschi and Pratico Roads affected by high iron levels be connected to the 150mm main and that the work be included in the city’s five-year capital plan at an estimated cost of $120,000.

The request stems from a March 2017 letter to council signed by residents of Beruschi and Pratico Roads.

“Over the last few years, residents have been observing yellow water, staining of sinks and bowls, unpleasant odor and taste, and a reduction in water pressure,” the letter says.

Twelve properties on the west side are currently connected to a two-inch galvanized waterline, which was likely installed during the first phase of development. The properties on the other side of the street are connected to a 150mm cement main line.

One of the property owners had a water sample tested by a certified lab.

“Results of the test revealed that the iron content is over three times the recommended level of 0.3mg/L. as per the Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Standards,” says the letter.

The city conducted its own test, which showed that the sample was right at the edge of the suitable level of iron.

During a presentation to council, city engineer Mike Thomas said that high iron in water is not a health risk, but an aesthetic objective.

Included in his report is the rationale for iron aesthetic objective, which says that “there is no evidence to indicate that concentrations of iron commonly present in food or drinking water constitute any hazard to human health.” But “concentrations above 0.3mg/L can stain laundry and plumbing fixtures and produce undesireable tastes in beverages.” It also says that “only a small percentage of the population will be able to taste iron in drinking water at concentrations below 0.3mg/L.”

“Both the 50mm and the 150mm mains are approaching the end of their useful life, but it is likely they have 10-20 years of maintenance-free life remaining,” says Thomas’ report.

Council also recommended that staff develop a sanitary sewer design for the Beruschi Road neighbourhood as well as a preliminary petition of interest on the city’s initiative be prepared for property owners on both sides of Beruschi Road regarding a Local Area Service for sanitary sewer.



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