Water Tank Worries

6 September 2020. By Greg Sayers, Rodney Councillor. Auckland Council has launched a tanker programme is delivering relief to parched rural communities.

Auckland Council has sent in a fleet of relief water tankers to assist with water deliveries to desperate families on tank water. These drivers are working with local private water carriers to get water to customers more quickly.

As the Rodney ward Councillor I lead the alert to Auckland Council to take action to get water to our rural families who were completely out of water. Their situation being dire.

I wish to acknowledge the tremendous support from of the Deputy Mayor and council staff in helping achieve this action.

On 15 February the first tanker-to-tanker operations began, using carefully sterilized milk tankers from the country’s milk tanker fleet providing water to local water delivery companies – for delivery to paying customers. The massive milk tankers are arriving pre-filled with water, so they are not using the local reservoirs.

This initiative allows local operators to be filling from the local reservoirs or the milk tankers, reducing wait times, as well as allowing them to complete more trips. A single milk tanker can fill four of the water delivery trucks.

In addition to its regular tanker filling sites, the Council provided an extra one at Kumeu which supplied more than 150,000L of water on the first day. At the time of submitting this article the delivery companies were ramping up even further.

While waiting for your tanker to arrive drinking water can be collected in your own handheld containers. The nearest being the Helensville Library between 10am – 8pm. Maori Wardens and council staff will be there to assist you. Neighbours are helping out neighbours as well. 

It will take time, but households on tank supply will find their delivery times will come forward. The process to get tank water is to call your water delivery company. They are inundated with calls so you will probably need to leave a voice mail message, text or send an email.

If you have concerns about a vulnerable family member’s well-being due to water shortages, then call Auckland Council directly (09 3010101) and log your concern with the Emergency Management unit.

The reservoirs in Rodney automatically turn off the filing ports to tankers when their levels drop so pressure is not lost to supply the towns people (who are Watercare customers, whereas tank owners are not) and also to ensure there is enough pressure retained for firefighting.

With time the hard-working drivers will get things back under control… in the meantime we will need to be patient. Everyone is trying their hardest.

I wish to thank those affected by the drought for showing great patience and a special thank you to the frazzled water tank drivers who are working so hard to get relief to our affected