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Bungled Lightsview water connection was "illegally moved" during construction

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A review of a bungled Lightsview “cross-connection” of recycled and drinking water that saw a family drinking what it called “dangerous water” for four years has found the pipes had been “incorrectly positioned” and “illegally moved” to accommodate the building’s design, it has been revealed.

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InDaily revealed this week that a resident of the State Government-backed inner-north development discovered that recycled wetlands water had been connected to his drinking supply for the past four years, despite complaining to SA Water about the quality of the supply in 2015.

He has since sought legal advice, amid fears his family has suffered “ongoing health issues” as a result of the bungle.

Lightsview is a joint venture between Renewal SA and developer Peet Limited, which subsumed the original development partner CIC Australia in 2015.

According to SA Water, the recycled water system in the Lightsview area “was installed by the estate’s developer, with water provided by Water Utilities Australia”.

However, SA Water is overseeing the investigation into what occurred, and says it “agreed between the various parties that SA Water would take the lead in communicating with the customer so they could have one consistent point of contact and coordination”.

In a statement to InDaily, the utility said “initial findings based on excavations on site found the property’s recycled and drinking water connections were incorrectly positioned and incorrectly labelled when installed by the third parties involved in the development”.

“SA Water has also identified both connections were illegally moved to accommodate the building’s design,” it said.

It will undertake “a more detailed analysis” next week.

SA Water says it “assisted by repositioning and reconnecting the services to the correct positions and connections to ensure our safe, clean drinking water is now connected to the home’s kitchen and bathroom taps”.

It’s understood the resident, who does not want to be named, was told not to drink the water for at least 10 days to ensure the “dirty” water was flushed from the system.

A spokesperson for SA Water said design standards for construction in land divisions “establish that drinking water be installed on the right-hand side, with recycled water placed on the left-hand side, and made clear through the use of lilac pipe or paint”.

SA Water, WUA and the developer all say they believe this was an isolated incident.

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