WAF acts to remedy water crisis in Lakena – FBC News


Residents of Lakena Hill 1 in Nausori and nearby areas are frustrated with continuous water supply disruptions since last year.

The residents claim water only runs in their taps at night creating problems for children and the elderly.

These residents are claiming that this has been happening since last November.

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50-year-old Lakena Hill 1 resident, Yogesh Kumar says they get water supply between 1am and 4am daily.


[50-year-old Lakena Hill 1 resident, Yogesh Kumar]

He says they are unable to do much during the three hours.


“As I am 50 years old, we have been suffering from the time I know when I was young and my parents were filling water at night time and we are still suffering.”

60-year-old Vidya Wati says it is difficult to carry out housework at that hour.


[60-year-old Vidya Wati]

“This water crisis has been as challenging for us as we have a baby in our family. It is also difficult as my ankle is fractured and my eyes are recently operated as well and I can’t be waking up at night to fill in water when it comes after midnight. Even when the water comes at around 1 am, it closes at 4 am.”

Responding to questions sent by FBC News, Water Authority of Fiji, Chief Operating Officer, Seru Soderberg says supply is affected when reservoir levels are low as a result of bad weather affecting production, as well as general high usage.

Soderberg adds Lakena Hill is on the highest areas within the supply zone, with other areas roughly at road level elevation.

He adds as an elevated area, supply is heavily dependent on the level of water retained within the Raralevu Reservoir.

Soderberg explains that during the day, water levels drop significantly due to the high demand from the outlet and water levels from this point fluctuate and vary in relation to the amount of usage that takes place over the day.

He says in addition to this, there is also high demand from the offtakes to the inlet of the Reservoir, that is, a pumping main which directly serves the greater Nausori area.

The Chief Operating Officer says to address the now depleted water reserves, after taking water consumption from the Reservoir outlet
and offtakes into account, they have no choice but to carry out valve operations from 9:00 pm until 6:00 am daily.

This is done at Vuci Bypass and Nausori Offtake, to assist with filling and level retention at the Raralevu Reservoir.

Soderberg adds that depending on the behaviour of the system and the rate of water consumption, these daily operations may be done at a time earlier than what has been scheduled.

He says while these works may frustrate customers, it is a necessary step to ensure that all customers serviced by the Reservoir are able to receive water the following day.


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