Backflow

Backflow describes the unwanted reverse flow of water. All water supply systems intended for human use, food preparation, utensil washing or oral hygiene must be protected from contact with contaminated water. This applies to water services connected to rainwater tanks, our regions’ main water supply and/or alternative water supplies. Contamination of potable water supplies can cause serious health risks.

  • Backflow prevention devices

    Backflow prevention devices control the risk of backflow of potentially polluted or contaminated water into drinking and bathing water supply systems.

    There are a number of different types of backflow prevention devices available that can only be installed, inspected and tested by a licensed plumber with a backflow prevention device endorsement.

  • Potential sources of contamination
    • fire hose reels
    • irrigation
    • swimming pools
    • vehicle maintenance pits
    • ornamental ponds
    • air conditioning towers
    • vehicle/bin wash bays
    • chemical injection areas
  • Examples of properties requiring backflow devices
    • motels, hotels, unit complexes and caravan parks
    • vehicle repair workshops
    • shops
    • restaurants
    • medical and dental surgeries
    • hospitals and funeral parlours
    • car and plant washing facilities
    • dry cleaners and laundries
    • schools, day care centres and kindergartens
    • club houses for sports
    • pest control and water carrying vehicles
    • botanic gardens
  • Legislation & penalties

    Backflow prevention devices come under the Standard Plumbing and Drainage Regulation 2003, which states that:

    A local government must implement and maintain a program for its local government area for the registration, maintenance and testing of testable backflow prevention devices installed in the area.  The local government, or an entity authorised by the local government, must keep a register of the testable backflow prevention devices.

    An owner of an installed testable backflow prevention device must register the device with the local government or entity and at least once each year and have the device inspected or tested by a person who is licensed to do the work.

    A person that inspects or tests a testable backflow prevention device must, within 10 business days after inspecting or testing the device, give the local government written results of the inspection or test in the approved form.

    An annual fee for each device is to be submitted to council with the results of the test undertaken by a person licensed to do the work.

  • First and final notice

    To remind the owner that their backflow prevention device is due for testing, we issue a First and Final Notice at the beginning of the month that the device is due to be tested. Failure to comply with the notice will result in a Show Cause Notice being issued, and then an Enforcement Notice with legal ramifications if no action is taken.

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