Okains Bay residents want safe drinking water

Residents of a small Banks Peninsula village are calling on the Christchurch City Council to build a $2.6 million water scheme so they can safely drink the tap water.
About 100 Okains Bay residents and the council-owned camping ground source water from a private scheme administered by a committee of locals.
The supply does not meet the Drinking Water Standards for New Zealand and health officials are putting pressure on the Okains Bay Water Committee to make the water drinkable.
* Okains Bay residents want drinkable water * Christchurch drinking water to be chlorinated for a year as councillors approve plan to keep it safe * Water contaminated 125 times in four years * Cloudy water concerns local residents * Steady progress improving drinking water quality The water is drawn from the nearby Opara Stream and fed into homes without being treated.
The water would still be taken from the same stream, but from further upstream, about 50 metres above sea level.
This was the staff’s preferred option, but no money has been set aside in the council’s budget for the work.
Okains Bay Water Committee chairman Peter Moore said it would be good if the council funded the scheme, because the committee was not able to.
He said while $2.6m might seem like a lot of money for 40 households, the water would be used by thousands of campers who stay at the Okains Bay camp ground each year.
Canterbury medical officer of health Alistair Humphrey said he was concerned for public safety and hoped the council would fund the scheme.
Okains Bay School spends more than $1000 a year on a filtration system and water testing so children and staff can drink the water.

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