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Council inspects Rochedale South wastewater network to identify defects and illegal connections

Published: 15 October 2015

Council inspects Rochedale South wastewater network to identify defects and illegal connections
Crs Lisa Bradley (left) and Don Petersen (Roads and Water Infrastructure Committee) visit an inspection in Rochedale South.

Logan City Council has begun looking for defects and illegal connections that allow stormwater to flow into the city's wastewater (sewerage) network during severe wet weather at Rochedale South.
Roads and Water Infrastructure Committee Chairperson, Councillor Don Petersen, said the inspection program was targeting about 700 properties.
"The wastewater network is specifically designed to collect and treat the wastewater collected from homes and businesses, while stormwater, which is the runoff from streets and houses, is collected and discharged in a different way and usually to creeks and rivers," he said.

"In a perfect system, the two networks would be completely separate, but unfortunately, stormwater enters the wastewater network due to defective, improper or illegal connections, with up to 70 per cent of the inflow coming from residential connections.
"When we have mild to moderate wet weather, there's generally no problems – our wastewater network can manage the amount of stormwater entering the system," he said.
"However, it's a different story when we experience severe wet weather.
"The network becomes overwhelmed by the stormwater inflow and wastewater overflows can happen, mostly in a way that we can manage, but sometimes the overflows will occur on residents' properties, and that's not ideal.
"By identifying and eliminating defects, we will be able to significantly reduce the wastewater overflows that occur during wet weather."
Cr Petersen said Council had identified catchments across the city that experienced frequent overflow incidents.
"These catchments are typically in parts of the city that have older infrastructure," he said.
"We completed an inspection program at Daisy Hill, Cornubia and Loganlea earlier this year and found about one in 15 properties had defects.
"Pleasingly, about 70 per cent of property owners are voluntarily rectifying their defects and we'll continue to work with the remaining people in line with the Plumbing and Drainage Act 2002."
Councillor Lisa Bradley (Division 1) said an inspection program would take place in Rochedale South until 23 December 2015 to help find defects and illegal connections.

"It's not a pleasant experience for people when they have sewage in their house, but they can be shocked to learn their handiwork has contributed to the problem and that it may not be Council's fault – I've seen this a couple of times this year during heavy rain events," she said.

"Illegal connections can affect subsequent homeowners, and you may not know what former owners have done to your house either, so this inspection program will be really important for our community."

The inspection program will use a range of methods to identify defects and illegal connections, including smoke and dye testing, property inspections, CCTV inspections of Council's sewer mains and manhole inspections.
For more information about the inspection program, phone Council on 3412 3412.