2006/13 + 2016/17: Springhurst (Victoria). E.coli, Blue Green Algae, Manganese, Trihalomethanes, Trichloroacetic Acid, Turbidity, Colour, Iron

Springhurst (Victoria)

24/05/10 Springhurst E. coli detection 1 org/100mL Unknown source as water was being carted from Wangaratta by an approved water carrier, and then boosted with hypochlorite at Springhurst WTP prior to distribution to the reticulation system. Resamples taken from the Springhurst WTP and the holding tank for the water carrier were clear

9/12/10 – <24hr Springhurst E.coli :1 org/100mL Water treatment operations were checked and all trends were satisfactory. Unknown. Springhurst Raw water contained elevated Blue Green Algae numbers which were unable to be treated at the Springhurst WTP. Cartage from Wangaratta from July – Sept 2010. Will be supplied from Wodonga, via Chiltern pipeline. Project


Thermotolerant coliforms are a sub-group of coliforms that are able to grow at 44.5 ± 0.2°C. E. coli is the most common thermotolerant coliform present in faeces and is regarded as the most specific indicator of recent faecal contamination because generally it is not capable of growth in the environment. In contrast, some other thermotolerant coliforms (including strains of Klebsiella, Citrobacter and Enterobacter) are able to grow in the environment and their presence is not necessarily related to faecal contamination. While tests for thermotolerant coliforms can be simpler than for E. coli, E. coli is considered a superior indicator for detecting faecal contamination…” ADWG

Springhurst (Victoria) – Manganese

2006/7: Springhurst (Victoria) – Manganese 2.1mg/L

2007/8: Springhurst (Victoria) – Manganese 0.61mg/L (highest detection)

9/11/09: Springhurst Manganese 0.94 mg/L Water was being carted from Wangaratta. The Town increased temperatures. The high water demand most likely resulted in manganese being stripped from reticulation pipes. Reminders of stage three restrictions were issued to decrease water flow and any further scouring of reticulation system.

Manganese: ADWG Guidelines 0.5mg/L. ADWG Aesthetic Guideline 0.1mg/L = 0.5mg/L
Manganese is found in the natural environment. Manganese in drinking water above 0.1mg/L can give water an unpleasant taste and stain plumbling fixtures and laundry.

Springhurst (Victoria) – Trichloroacetic Acid/Dichloroacetic Acid

2009/10: Springhurst (Victoria) 0.230mg/L Trichloroacetic Acid (Highest Detection)

2009/10: Springhurst Dichloroacetic Acid 0.094mg/L

(Australian Drinking Water Guideline Trichloroacetic Acid: 0.100mg/L)

“Chloroacetic acids are produced in drinking water as by-products of the reaction between chlorine and naturally occurring humic and fulvic acids. Concentrations reported overseas range up to 0.16mg/L and are typically about half the chloroform concentration. The chloroacetic acids are used commercially as reagents or intermediates in the preparation of a wide variety of chemicals. Monochloroacetic acid can be used as a pre-emergent herbicide, dichloroacetic acid as an ingredient in some pharmaceutical products, and trichloroacetic acid as a herbicide, soil sterilant and antiseptic.” Australian Drinking Water Guidelines – National Health and Medical Research Council…

There are no epidemiological studies of TCA carcinogenicity in humans. Most of the human health data for chlorinated acetic acids concern components of complex mixtures of water disinfectant by-products. These complex mixtures of disinfectant by-products have been associated with increased potential for bladder, rectal, and colon cancer in humans [reviewed by Boorman et al. (1999); Mills et al. (1998)].” Ref: tmp/Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) CASRN 76-03-9 IRIS US EPA.htm

Springhurst (Victoria) – Trihalomethanes

2009/10: Springhurst 0.260mg/L Trihalomethanes

Trihalomethanes Australian Guideline Level 250μg/L (0.25mg/L)

Why and how are THMs formed?
“When chlorine is added to water with organic material, such as algae, river weeds, and decaying leaves, THMs are formed. Residual chlorine molecules react with this harmless organic material to form a group of chlorinated chemical compounds, THMs. They are tasteless and odourless, but harmful and potentially toxic. The quantity of by-products formed is determined by several factors, such as the amount and type of organic material present in water, temperature, pH, chlorine dosage, contact time available for chlorine, and bromide concentration in the water. The organic matter in water mainly consists of a) humic substance, which is the organic portion of soil that remains after prolonged microbial decomposition formed by the decay of leaves, wood, and other vegetable matter; and b) fulvic acid, which is a water soluble substance of low molecular weight that is derived from humus”. Source: https://water.epa.gov/drink/contaminants/index.cfm

Springhurst – Victoria – Turbidity

2007/8: Springhurst (Victoria) – Turbidity 8.7 NTU

2010/11 Springhurst Turbidity 6.3NTU

2011/12: Springhurst Turbidity 5.4NTU

2012/13: Springhurst Turbidity 5.2NTU

Chlorine-resistant pathogen reduction: Where filtration alone is used as the water treatment
process to address identified risks from Cryptosporidium and Giardia, it is essential
that filtration is optimised and consequently the target for the turbidity of water leaving
individual filters should be less than 0.2 NTU, and should not exceed 0.5 NTU at any time
Disinfection: A turbidity of less than 1 NTU is desirable at the time of disinfection with
chlorine unless a higher value can be validated in a specific context.

Aesthetic: Based on aesthetic considerations, the turbidity should not exceed 5 NTU at the
consumer’s tap.

Springhurst (Victoria) – Colour

2009/10: Springhurst Colour 70HU

Based on aesthetic considerations, true colour in drinking water should not exceed 15 HU.

“… Colour is generally related to organic content, and while colour derived from natural sources such as humic and fulvic acids is not a health consideration, chlorination of such water can produce a variety of chlorinated organic compounds as by-products (see Section 6.3.2 on disinfection by-products). If the colour is high at the time of disinfection, then the water should be checked for disinfection by-products. It should be noted, however, that low colour at the time of disinfection does not necessarily mean that the concentration of disinfection by-products will be low…

Springhurst –  Victoria – Iron

2016/17  Springhurst Iron  0.77mg/L

Based on aesthetic considerations (precipitation of iron from solution and taste),
the concentration of iron in drinking water should not exceed 0.3 mg/L.
No health-based guideline value has been set for iron.

Iron has a taste threshold of about 0.3 mg/L in water, and becomes objectionable above 3 mg/L. High iron concentrations give water an undesirable rust-brown appearance and can cause staining of laundry and plumbing fittings, fouling of ion-exchange softeners, and blockages in irrigation systems. Growths of iron bacteria, which concentrate iron, may cause taste and odour problems and lead to pipe restrictions, blockages and corrosion. ADWG 2011