More than 40 drinking water treatment operators from around Northland attended a workshop about ultraviolet (UV) disinfection.

The operators ranged from large-scale water treatment plant technicians from local authorities to marae and communities who supply water to homes in their areas.

The UV disinfection systems the company Filtec and Water Industry Operations Group (WIOG) were training operators on is a well-established method of water disinfection.

The UV deactivates bacteria, protozoa and viruses by rendering them incapable of reproducing and infecting. It is a simple and relatively inexpensive treatment, especially for small and remote water supplies.


Last week's workshop, hosted by the Northland District Health Board, was a rare opportunity for smaller community operators to gain first-hand theory and hands-on interactive demonstrations using one of Filtec's UV reactors.

DHB drinking water assessor Keith Turner Keith said it was the first time WIOG had been north of Auckland to offer training.

Operators learned how to operate and monitor their systems to get the most out of them and gained a better understanding of compliance requirements.

The DHB drinking water assessment unit monitors drinking water in the region so it meets compliance. The UV systems have inbuilt monitoring systems to alert the water supplier if the system is not operating correctly.