Water able to be carted into Guyra to relieve a desperate situation

PUMPING OUT: SRH tanker drivers Dave Kennedy and Chris Channells pump water into the output tank at the Guyra Water Treatment Works.
PUMPING OUT: SRH tanker drivers Dave Kennedy and Chris Channells pump water into the output tank at the Guyra Water Treatment Works.

Water started being trucked to Guyra from Armidale on Wednesday.

With Level 5 water restrictions expected in about a fortnight, and the Guyra Dam predicted to be empty by mid-July, Armidale Regional Council engaged water carriers now to relieve the shortage as much as possible and also perfect any longer-term supply logistics that may occur.

Malpas Dam pipeline is not expected to be supplying water by mid-August, so council could be hauling water into town from anywhere from six to 10 weeks.

Mayor Simon Murray said he expected Guyra to go onto Level 5 water restrictions on June 20.


Council engaged Newcastle-based SRH Milk Haulage, which mobilised two 36,000 litre tankers for Wednesday's transfers, and there will eventually be four tankers utilised.

"The two trucks travelled smoothly and everything moved along nicely according to our estimations," Cr Murray said.

"We're confident this will have a really positive effect for the people of Guyra, and we've now tested supplying water to Guyra."

Potable water was pumped from a large water main in Armidale's Mott Street.

Trucks take about 35 minutes to fill and about 30 minutes to drive to Guyra, where they go to the Water Treatment Plant and spent another 35 minutes pumping the water into the outlet side of the plant, before it is pumped up into the reservoir.

Council CEO Susan Law said SRH was an accomplished firm when it came to carting liquids, and had all the appropriate licences.

"They're an experienced milk haulage company, and as it's a slow period for dairy products, it has been convenient for us. We're still calculating the amount that is going to be necessary," she said.

"The delivery will be on a four truck configuration. Initially, we're going to involve two trucks, which means we will have a delivery of 1.2 megalitres."

Mrs Law said the use of two trucks allowed for any adjustments to be taken into account.

"We wanted to ensure that the delivery capability and the travel times could also be confirmed," she said.

"We are providing for the delivery of 26 megalitres for the period right through until August 19, when the Guyra Dam levels will be critical, and we hope the pipeline can be commissioned."

Mrs Law said the Member for Northern Tablelands, Adam Marshall, had indicated that funding was approved.

"This funding just gets us through to when the pipeline can be commissioned."