PRESS RELEASE: SHIRE TO ENGAGE COMMUNITY ON WATER TOWER FUTURE

Published: Wednesday, 7 August 2019 at 8:50:04 AM

The Shire of Merredin will seek community feedback on the future of the Merredin Water Tower, after receiving an inspection report from contractor GHD Pty Ltd.

The Shire employed GHD Pty Ltd to undertake an analysis of the tank after safety concerns were raised. 

Scaffolding was built around the structure last month in order to assess the structural integrity of the 25,000 gallon cast iron tank (the top of the tank with ‘Kalgoorlie Bitter’ painted on its side).

GHD Pty Ltd has advised the Shire that the Merredin Water Tank is structurally unstable due to a number of cracks, excessive rust, and corrosion and is therefore at risk of sudden failure.

GHD Pty Ltd is recommending that the tank be demolished.

There is a loose piece of cast iron on the South East corner of the tank and this piece has been identified as a safety issue due to the possibility of it falling.

 The cause of damage to the tank is believed to be a combination of the tank remaining empty for a significant period of time, continually subject to compression/tension stress and environmental factors (wind and temperature).

While the Merredin Water Tank is on Public Transport Authority land, the tank itself is a point of local pride and a landmark of the town.

The Shire understands that this is an issue close to the heart of Merredin and will therefore engage in a widespread community consultation process in line with our Community Engagement Framework.

This community engagement will ask locals what they would like to see happen to the tower.  

The GHD report did conclude that welding repairs and cold metal stitching repairs would not be feasible in this instance.

The tank stand has been inspected from the ground and for now has been assessed as being in reasonably good condition.

The Shire will be conducting further inspections to assess the safety and quality of the stand.

The report conducted by GHD Pty Ltd is now available to the public on the Shire website.

For media inquiries please contact Lily Hoffmann, Media and Communications Officer for the Shire of Merredin on 9041 1611.

Further public enquiries can be directed to the Shire on 9041 1611.

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