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Repairs To Wheatley Water Treatment Plant Could Take A Year, Boil Water Advisory Continues

Wednesday September 20th, 2023, 4:27pm


Chatham-Kent Fire Photo

Repairs to the Wheatley Water Treatment Plant after a fire last week are expected to take a year or longer.

Chatham-Kent Public Utilities Commission says they are working closely with Chatham-Kent Public Health Unit, Windsor-Essex Public Health Unit and the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks to resolve the Boil Water Advisory that has been in place since the fire.

System changes are being implemented to ensure the water supply is sustainable. Once system reliability can be confirmed, water testing will determine when the advisory can be lifted.

“We would like the people of Wheatley and Tilbury to know that although the Water Treatment Plant will be out of service for the foreseeable future, this does not necessarily mean that the Boil Water Advisory will be active for that amount of time as well,” said Tim Sunderland, General Manager of Chatham-Kent Public Utilities Commission. “Once we stabilize the water supply, which we are working to do now, we will be able to test the water with accurate and repeatable results.”

PUC staff are working to maintain the water supply through bulk water haulers, and system interconnects with neighbouring water systems. Residents in the affected communities may notice trailers being brought in as a precautionary measure to house emergency bottled water.

For now, Wheatley and Tilbury residents will experience low water pressure. The PUC is asking that residents of Wheatley, Tilbury and customers served by the South Water Treatment Plant (which includes the communities of Blenheim, Merlin, Coatsworth, Shrewsbury, Rondeau and Erieau) conserve water until further notice.

Water can be consumed during a Boil Water Advisory after bringing it to a rolling boil for one minute.

“We continue to gather information on the extent of the damage and will be providing a timeline for restoration of full service as soon as possible,” said Sunderland.

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