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Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

"Vandalism" on the Kangaloon Borefield

Mr Debus issued a Press Release on the afternoon of 26 February 2007 complaining that "vandals" had damaged pipes on the Kangaloon Aquifer borefield.

According to Mr Debus's statement, Police had been called to investigate, and security patrols would be stepped up.


Fascinating: Here are some facts, documented with pictures.

When driving along Tourist Road, on Monday morning, at about 10:45am. to check if pumping was occurring (as expected). I happened to notice a relatively small leak (equivalent to one large garden hose worth of "squirt") coming from one of the pipes - spraying about 10 metres into the bush.

I stopped to take a photo of the cracked pipe, to monitor what I assumed to be the SCA's carelessness, in view of the fact that it was still squirting, while workmen were nearby.

Anyway, I realised that the the pipe was cracked at a point where the pipeline was slightly bent, and was therefore under pressure.

So, I figured that this was not unexpected on the first day of pumping. One could reasonably regard it as normal operational problems, I judged.

The crack appeared to be quite straight. I had a pretty good look at it, because I was curious to work out why the pipe was leaking. It appeared to me to be a straight cut, across the side of the pipe where the bend was, so I assumed that it was a result of pressure. The pipe had definitely not been "hacked at" as the crack was very clean. I formed the impression that it might have been a machine cut, presumably made in the factory.

I drove back up the road, to where I had seen one of the workers from Ted Wilson and Sons (TWS) - the pumping contractors - who was at the next pumping station along Tourist Road. I reported that there was water squirting out from a cracked pipe. The workman said "Yeah, we know. Thanks".

The cracked pipe was repaired by the contractors, with a simple metal sleeve fitted over the cracked area, and bolted together (see photo).

Here was water gushing out of the end of the pipe 1.5Km down the road from where the leak was. This photo was taken at approximately 4:20pm, on Monday 26 February.

Little did I know that up in Macquarie Street, Mr Debus was about to disgorge the contemptuous rubbish which you have read (above) which passes for a Ministerial Press Release.

Mr Debus seems to do all his best work late in the afternoon.

The real question is: Who are the true vandals at the Kangaloon Aquifer?

The SCA's pumping proposal will simply suck the life out of the forest and swamps in the Kangaloon Aquifer.

God knows how the farmers will cope, when the groundwater drops to 60 metres.

And yet the local people get a slur of being called "Vandals". Amazing.