City water up to snuff

Council recently received Parksville’s 2010 water report, showing the city meets or exceeds all the laws and standards.

Council recently received Parksville’s 2010 water report, showing the city meets or exceeds all the laws and standards.

The annual report, which reviews the over all state of the city’s water and water infrastructure, is required by provincial and federal regulations and submitted to the Vancouver Island Health Authority.

The report includes a review of capital works, public complaints, regular sampling and more extensive annual tests.

It states “The Engineering and Operations Department had very few water quality complaints throughout 2010. Most were related to a noticeable chlorine taste in the water. A majority of these complaints were from residences closest to the pump station where the chlorine is injected.”

There were a few complaints about the hardness of the water, which mostly came from new homeowners, it says.

There were also a few “brown or dirty water” complaints that came from “flushing fire hydrants during maintenance or changes in flows with or without the river pump station on line.”

The water is sampled randomly on a weekly basis at 16 dedicated sampling sites. Of the 190 samples done in 2010, three were just over the acceptable limit and were acceptable by the next test.

When one sample was found a bit higher, still described as not high, the area mains were flushed as a precaution, re-tested a week later and found to be acceptable.

The city water system includes 4,500 connections serving 11,000 residents in Parksville, plus supplying Nanoose Bay from the Englishman River in the summer.

Aside from supplementing the supply from the river in the summer, the city’s water comes from 18 wells in the Springwood and Railway Well Fields.

The city has over 95 km of watermain pipes, of which over half are PVC plastic, 32 km are asbestos cement and more than half are under 25 years old.

Among routine and capital work done in 2010 two new pumps were installed, the river intake gallery was cleaned and Moilliet Street received entirely new water, sewer and storm services.

The report is available on the city’s website at

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