Warm weather and water quality

30 October 2015

Managing a city’s drinking water quality is a complex process at the best of times, but it can be especially challenging when the warmer months are upon us.

While Warrnambool is fortunate to be supplied by some of Victoria’s most reliable, high quality water sources, the local reservoirs that store raw water prior to treatment are not immune from the forces of nature.

Wannon Water’s recent proactive water testing has detected a small amount of seasonal algae in one of these reservoirs, which could temporarily affect the taste and odour of the drinking water for some customers in Warrnambool, Allansford and Koroit.

Wannon Water Managing Director Andrew Jeffers said the presence of algae is a common occurrence at this time of year when the weather becomes warmer, but customers can be assured that the drinking water remains safe to drink.

“Algae thrive in warm, sunny conditions and it is not uncommon to see taste and odour-causing algae develop in water storages from Spring onwards, not just in Warrnambool but right across Victoria,” Mr Jeffers said.

“Our treatment process ensures that the water supplied from the Warrnambool treatment plant is perfectly safe to drink and continues to comply with the Australian Drinking Water Quality Guidelines 2011.

“However, some customers may notice a slight change in the taste and odour of the drinking water over the coming days. Many customers won’t notice any change at all.”

Wannon Water’s proactive water testing program has helped detect the algal presence early, and the water corporation is well prepared to respond through several measures, including:

  • Taking the affected water storage offline while it is treated to remove the algae;
  • Increasing the frequency and extent of its water testing; and
  • Flushing sections of the water supply network as required.

If customers have any concerns about their drinking water supply, they are encouraged to contact Wannon Water directly on 1300 926 666.

Further water quality information is available at by clicking here or by calling Wannon Water.