What's this project all about?

TasWater preserves and maintains approximately 36,000 hydrants across the state of Tasmania. These hydrants hold a variety of purposes and have an important part to play for our Emergency Services.

As part of this maintenance, we are required to inspect and flush most of these Hydrants.

The condition of fire hydrants and the water mains that feed them deteriorates over time. We need to ensure that they are fit for purpose and are able to operate effectively when required in an emergency.

A statewide five-year rolling program of hydrant inspections, testing and maintenance has been implemented by TasWater. Under the program hydrant testing has been prioritized by average system pressure so that hydrants in lower pressure systems are tested first. This is due to the reduced ability of hydrants in lower pressure areas to deliver higher flow rates.

  • The work to be carried out at each hydrant site includes verifying their location, assessing their condition, accessibility, markings and checking for leaks and running flow tests.
  • All testing is done by qualified contractors. Customers will be notified ahead of time by SMS text blast, when the hydrant testing crew is in their area.
  • Testing should have little impact on the water supply within private properties and we should not be required to enter private property to conduct this testing.
  • In some cases however fire hydrants, utilising mains, are located within private property. If access to your property is required to carry out the testing, we will knock on your door prior. If the hydrant is not easily accessible we will contact you to arrange a time for the inspection.
  • Testing will generally occur between 7.30am and 5pm on weekdays and take less than 30 minutes.
  • There may be a slight drop in water pressure during the testing. You may also notice your water is temporarily dirty or cloudy in appearance due to harmless, tiny air bubbles being trapped in the pipes and dispersed through the water. If you are at home when the testing occurs, try to not use the water during this time.

In some cases, due to the high-water flows through the system, customers may notice some discoloration or minor flecks in the water. To clear your water, run an outside tap for a few minutes. After this, catch some water in a clear cup or container. If it is clear, you can use your water. If the water coming from the tap doesn’t clear in five minutes, wait 30 minutes, and try again. If you then experience ongoing water quality issues after that, please contact us.

Your water service should not be interrupted, but on rare occasions the testing process may cause an unplanned interruption to your water supply. If you are concerned, we recommend you store enough water for use during this period. If your water supply is interrupted, we will notify you and immediately work to restore your service.

The goal of our testing program is to assure a reliable water supply in the event of a fire. The testing confirms that hydrants are operational, provide adequate water flow, and that we have a high degree of confidence that all hydrants will perform properly in an emergency.

We thank you for your patience and understanding as we undertake this important inspection program.