Thousands were left without water, or low water pressure as the Point Lisas desalination plant had to be shut down after experiencing “raw water quality issues” on Tuesday.
The plant owned and run by the Desalination Company of TT (Desalcott) supplies WASA with 40 million gallons of water a day.
Customers in parts of central, south and west Trinidad have been affected.
In a release sent to the media on Tuesday, the Water and Sewerage Authority (WASA) said a limited truckborne water service will be available, with priority given to special homes, health care and government institutions.
The release said, “Desalcott has indicated that they are currently experiencing poor raw water quality issues, causing operations at the facility to be stopped…The authority is in constant communication with the company and will provide a further update on when the plant will return to service, as soon as this information becomes available."
Desalcott couldn’t say exactly when the plant would return to full operation, and could only confirm that it may take up to 48 hours for the water supply to normalise after the plant has been restored.
WASA chairman Ravindra Nanga told Newsday everything possible is being done to mitigate all issues arising from the shutdown.
He said, “(We are) increasing our supply at the different water treatment plants as well as putting truckborne water supply into effect in order to lessen the impact of the shutdown of the plant.”
He said this is not the first time this plant had to be shut down, and each time the authority was able to provide a stable supply of water to affected communities.
“From time to time, there will be issues with the Point Lisas plant, whether it’s planned or unplanned, and once we get notice of that we put these contingency measures in place.”
Nanga said the authority will be asking for a full report on the incident soon.
“What we have been told, from the preliminary report, given the condition of the raw water coming in – which I suspect has to do with the inclement weather over the weekend – that was what caused the plants to go down.”
Areas affected include:
City of San Fernando
Gasparillo South West
Parts of La Brea
Parts of Siparia including De Gannes Village and Quarry Village
Mora Dam Road.