SA Water is replacing around 185m of water main under Field Street, between Semmens Road and Main Road in McLaren Vale to reduce the impact of water main breaks on its customers and the area’s road users.

The upgrade is part of an ongoing program that will see $137 million invested to replace around 375km of water mains across South Australia between 2016 and 2020.

SA Water’s General Manager of Asset Operations and Delivery, Mark Gobbie, said this section of pipe was prioritised for replacement after recent breaks and leaks.

“Water main incidents are typically triggered by environmental factors like weather and soil movement, so we can’t completely stop them from happening, but we’re fully committed to reducing their incidence and impact on our customers,” Mr Gobbie said.

“The new pipes will be made of PVC, which is flexible and more resistant to the movement caused by the area’s diverse mix of soil types, than existing, rigid cast iron and fibro-cement pipes.”

Both the old and new water mains have an expected lifespan of 100 years.

More than half of SA Water’s 27,000km network of pipes are under 50 years old, which is relatively young by urban water industry standards.

“In this instance, the new pipe will be laid using traditional trenching techniques with some temporary traffic diversions in place from time to time,” Mr Gobbie said. 

Elisa is an experienced industry journalist and is a regular contributor to a range of energy and infrastructure titles. She has a unique knack for quickly finding the angle in any story her audience is most interested in learning more about.

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