The drinking water provided by the City of Weyburn is safe to drink in spite of the taste and odour of the water at this time of year, city council was told on Monday evening.
In a report on the state of the drinking water’s smell, city engineer Jennifer Wilkinson said the quality of the water, drawn from Nickle Lake, is affected by a number of factors.
“The primary sources of taste and odour problems in drinking water are from algae and bacteria. Despite taste and odour concerns, the water is still completely safe for consumption,” she said, noting that continual ongoing testing proves the safety of the water.
The level of Nickle Lake dropped to 57.2 cm as of Aug. 31, a drop of 18.3 cm.
The low water levels of Nickle Lake creates an environment for algae blooms to grow in the summertime, with light, temperature and nutrient conditions adding to this condition.
“When we send it through the treatment plant, it removes the harmful contaminants during the treatment and disinfection process. These factors trigger the earthy, fishy or grassy smell resident may experience coming from their water taps,” said Wilkinson.
Trained city staff performs tests on the water every four hours to make sure it is safe and that the harmful contaminants are removed.
There are multiple samples sent every week for bacteriological testing to the provincial lab.
The City of Weyburn had a major upgrade in their water treatment system, as in 2018-19, a $15 million project was completed to add a 13-million litre reservoir to the main plant, along with upgrades to the First Avenue reservoir.
The total treated water produced in the month of August was 175.27 million litres.
• In other council business, Mayor Marcel Roy officially proclaimed Culture Days, after a presentation by Alice Neufeld, the arts and cultural director for the City of Weyburn. He proclaimed Sept. 25 to Oct. 25 as Culture Days in Weyburn, as they will be presented virtually, with some 30 videos on line showing various artists and cultural activities available in the city, including a video showing the installation of a collaborative mural of a photo by John Woodward.
• Council approved a development permit for the Liquor Spot to locate a shipping container for storage on a property at 1720 East Avenue.
The container measures 40 feet by eight feet near the former location of the Wor-Kin Shop SARCAN depot.
• The City of Weyburn issued six building permits in August with a total construction value of $1,139,500. The biggest project was to add a waterslide and pool room to a property on Grace Street, with a value of $1,080,000.
The other projects were for detached garages, a rear covered deck and for exterior renovations.
In the year to date, the City has issued 36 building permits with a total construction value of $7,617,000. Also so far in 2020, the City has processed four applications for the Weyburn Builds program, and issued a total of $3,085 in grants for these projects, mainly exterior renovations and additions.