Beaudesert residents say tap water on the nose

SMELL: Beaudesert residents have gone off Scenic Rim tap water.
SMELL: Beaudesert residents have gone off Scenic Rim tap water.

THE people of Beaudesert have noticed something different about their tap water, with some refusing to drink it, others worried about showering in it and many of them airing their concerns on social media.

Mother of four Rebecca Shorter said she noticed the smell more than a week ago after her son took a shower and asked her if she had just cleaned the bathroom.

“He said the bathroom smelled like the pool,” Ms Shorter said.

“When I had a shower I could smell the chlorine too and it wasn’t until I read all the posts on Facebook that I realised it wasn’t just my house.

“My hair became all brittle and knotty and I ended up going to the hairdressers and having it cut short.”

She said the tap water in the kitchen also had a nasty taste, so she decided to use bottled water for drinking.

“Over the past week I have had headaches every day and I have a four-month-old baby who is bottle fed.”

Ms Shorter said with young children to worry about she had emailed her concerns to Urban Utilities, demanding to know if the water is really safe to drink.

“I also want to know how long we can expect the water to be like this,” she said.

“Because it this is what we can expect in the long term, no offence but no, thanks.”

A spokeswoman for Queensland Urban Utilities said the tap water in Beaudesert was not unhealthy.

“Following reports of taste and odour changes to the tap water in Beaudesert, Queensland Urban Utilities and Seqwater would like to advise residents the water is safe to drink,” she said. 

“Tap water is constantly monitored and tested to verify it meets the rigorous Australian Drinking Water Guidelines and the water in the Beaudesert supply zone meets these guidelines.

“The taste and odour of tap water may vary from time to time, and can be impacted by recent rain events in the catchment.”

The QUU website states that an earthy or musty smell in water comes from compounds secreted by bacteria in the soil and while the levels of these compounds tend to go up after rain, they could not be described as toxic.

Kamarooka Street resident Stephanie Tulai said the water quality had declined in the past few weeks.

“I have lived here for 14 years and it’s never been this bad, it smells muddy” she said.

“Saying it’s safe to drink isn’t enough. I wouldn’t drink it. It stinks.”

More information on taste and odour is available on the Queensland Urban Utilities website