Salinity drop leaves salty taste

SALINITY levels may have started to drop in the Fitzroy River, but the aftertaste from could linger.

CQUniversity water quality expert Ben Kele yesterday said a poor perception about the water supply was likely to remain for some time, even once the quality returned to normal.

Recent rains across Central Queensland have delivered what so many in the community have been waiting for - a significant drop in the Fitzroy River's salinity levels from 830 uS/cm to just above 600 uS/cm yesterday.

Rockhampton's water supply is drawn from the Fitzroy.

"Once people have it in their head that something tastes bad, the water can go back to what it was when they were happy, but they still think it tastes funny," Mr Kele said.

He said for the salinity level to drop so quickly indicated heavy localised rain in the right area of the Fitzroy's catchment.

Further rains in these areas would return the water to normal levels about 400 uS/cm.

Mr Kele said the region would need another prolonged dry period for the salinity levels to climb back up to the recent high marks.

Even at its salinity peak, authorities repeatedly emphasised drinking water remained within the Australian Drinking Water quality guidelines.

Once people have it in their head that something tastes bad, the water can go back to what it was when they were happy, but they still think it tastes funny



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