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Coronavirus (COVID-19)

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A letter from Managing Director Sarah Cumming


We’re putting in place some additional measures to ensure we can continue to deliver safe and reliable essential water and wastewater services during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

From Wednesday 25 March 2020 onwards, our office at 55 Hazelwood Road Traralgon will be closed to the public until further notice. Our team is still available to help you during this time.

You can call us on 1800 050 500 or contact us online through our website. To report a leak or fault, please call 1800 057 057, 24x7.


Moondarra Reservoir now closed

With Stage 3 restrictions now in place throughout Victoria to combat the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Moondarra Reservoir is now closed to the public until further notice.

We apologise for the inconvenience, but have made this decision with your health and safety our main priority.

Moondarra Reservoir is our largest catchment and storage reservoir. We own and manage significant tracts of native bushland, farmland and plantation timber surrounding the reservoir.


Water quality during this time

The drinking water we supply in Victoria is treated and safe to drink.

There is no evidence that drinking water will be affected by COVID-19, or that it is transmitted by drinking water.

There is also no evidence that the virus is transmitted by wastewater systems.

Water is an essential service and we’re well prepared to manage our response to COVID-19, should the situation escalate.

The Department of Health and Human Services regulates the safety of drinking water supplied in Victoria under a comprehensive regulatory framework that aims to ensure a consistent, reliable supply of safe, good quality drinking water.

Information on drinking water and public health is available on the Victorian Health website.

We encourage you to follow the instructions and recommendations by the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) website on COVID-19 to get the most up to date information.

The Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA) has also developed a fact sheet to provide facts about drinking water services and COVID-19.


Frequently asked questions

COVID-19 and your water

Can I catch COVID-19 from drinking water?

There is no evidence that the COVID-19 virus is transmitted by drinking water. The current evidence is that the COVID-19 virus is most likely transmitted from person-to-person by sneezing and coughing.

Drinking water in Australia is high quality and is well treated. The safety of drinking water supplied to Victorians is regulated by the Department of Health and Human Services under a comprehensive regulatory framework that aims to ensure a consistent, reliable supply of safe, good quality drinking water.

There is no evidence that drinking water will be affected by COVID-19.

We encourage you to follow the instructions and recommendations by the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services website on COVID-19 to get the most up to date information.

For information on drinking water and public health, visit the Victorian Health website.


Can COVID-19 be transmitted by the wastewater system?

There is no evidence that the COVID-19 virus can be transmitted via wastewater systems, with or without wastewater treatment.

Wastewater continues to be managed and treated properly and carefully by water utilities to protect public health and the environment.

Best practices for protecting the occupational health of workers at wastewater treatment plants continue to be maintained.

In general wastewater treatment plants are secure, have back up power and require few staff to operate them and some wastewater treatment plants can be operated remotely.


Should I buy bottled water?

There is no need to buy bottled water for drinking. Safe, clean tap water will continue to be supplied directly to your home every day.


How are water utilities protecting the water supply?

Water utilities have stringent hygiene measures in place at water treatment plants. In addition, there is almost no human contact in the process of treating water for drinking.

Existing water treatment and disinfection processes, including use of chlorine, are effective in removing viruses from water supplies.

Water utilities are in contact with key Government agencies to monitor and understand the health impact of COVID-19 as it develops.


What if workers are quarantined at home, will water still be supplied?

Water is an essential service and water utilities are well prepared to manage their response to COVID-19. Water utilities have existing emergency response plans and are continuing to update them in response to the most current available information.

In general water treatment plants are secure, have back up power and require few staff to operate them and some water treatment plants can be operated remotely.


How can you be sure you'll still be able to provide drinking water and wastewater services?

Please be reassured that our highest priorities are to keep our people safe, and continue to deliver safe and reliable services across our service area. Our team is working hard to make sure your water and wastewater services are safe and secure. We have comprehensive plans in place, and are as prepared as possible, should the situation progress.


Continue to maintain your private drinking water supply (rainwater tanks, bore water)

If you rely on a private drinking water supply continue to maintain it by using the department’s existing guidance available at Better Health Channel.

There is no evidence that drinking water will be affected by COVID-19 and there is no evidence that the virus can be transmitted by drinking water.


Practise good hygiene when using public drinking water fountains and bubblers

Public drinking water supplies are safe to drink, however the surfaces around the fountain including the spout and button/lever could pose a transmission risk for COVID-19. When using public drinking water fountains and bubblers it is good practice to run them to draw fresh, drinking water through prior to drinking and most importantly avoid placing your mouth directly on the fountain or bubbler. When filling up your water bottle at the drink fountain, ensure the spout of your drink bottle does not contact the fountain head or bubbler.

If the fountain requires you to push a button or lever, clean the surface first or use your elbow or a clean tissue to operate the tap. Wash your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub if you’ve touched a button or lever with your hands.


Reporting a fault

To complete this work, our team may need to access parts of your property to get to our assets, such as the manhole or water meter.

If we do need to enter your property, please be reassured that we’re following strict hygiene and social distancing processes.

We ask you to do the same for us.

In the event that we need your assistance, we’ll make sure we follow social distancing guidelines.


Bills and enquiries

I have a question about my bill, can I come see someone to talk about it?

As of Wednesday 25 March 2020, our office at 55 Hazelwood Road Traralgon is closed to the public until further notice.

However, our team is still available to help you during this time.

You can call us on 1800 050 500, or alternatively contact us online through our website.

If you need to report a leak or fault, please call 1800 057 057, which is available 24x7.


I can no longer afford my water bill, how can you help me?

We understand that some of our customers’ circumstances may have recently changed as the result of the COVID-19.

We have flexible payment options available and our customer care program for customers who may be having difficulty paying their account.

To discuss your individual circumstances, please call us on 1800 050 500 or contact us online through our website.


Bookings and visits

Can we still book portable water fountains or water trailers?

As a precautionary measure to our staff and customers, we have suspended and cancelled all portable water fountain and water trailer bookings until further notice.


Can we still book education visits for later in the year?

As a precautionary measure, we have suspended and cancelled all education bookings until further notice. This includes all site tours including the Gippsland Water Factory and Vortex centre.


Can we arrange events with Gippsland Water for a later date?

Not at this stage. All event bookings have been suspended and cancelled until further notice.


More information

Where do I find updates on COVID-19?

About Us

Gippsland Water supplies fresh clean drinking water to more than 70,000 customers, and wastewater services to more than 63,000 customers across an area of more than 5,000 square kilometres. It maintains a $1 billion infrastructure network, which includes more than 2,000 kilometres of water mains, 15 water treatment plants, over 1,700 kilometres of sewer mains and 14 wastewater treatment plants.

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Contact Us

Gippsland Water Head Office, 55 Hazelwood Road, Traralgon, VIC, 3844

Phone: 1800 050 500
Fax: (03) 5174 0103
Interpreter service: 131 450
TTY: 1800 555 677
Email: contactus@gippswater.com.au

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