Anger and embarrassment is simmering for Methven business owners around the town’s shoddy water supply which has been described as “like living in the third world”.
In what is peak season for the Mid Canterbury alpine town, there are fears that the town’s reputation will be tarnished as out of towners are served water in plastic bottles.
Residents connected to the Methven and Methven-Springfield water schemes are facing at least another week of boiling water due to sediment-infected flood water infiltrating intake galleries following the weekend’s South Island floods.
The Ashburton District Council is considering a report on a planned Methven water supply upgrade next week, including the possibility of expediting plans to build a new reservoir in the town.
“Council agrees that this situation is not acceptable and needs to change,” council infrastructure group services manager Neil McCann said.
“It has been very frustrating for everyone concerned to respond to two significant flood events within six weeks, but council is hopeful that the boiled water notice can be lifted soon.”
Ski Time’s Pete Wood said it was a bad look in what was a busy period.
“It’s not a very good look when you are trying to attract visitors and investment into Methven, and we have that quality of water,” he said.
“We need to be able to address it somehow as going down to a tanker three or four times a day isn’t ideal.”
Brinkley Village general manager Paul Creswick said the council needed to figure out what was going on.
The accommodation provider has more than 200 guests and is having to dish out bottled water to visitors.
“I get the cost of infrastructure, but you expect to turn the tap on and get fresh water,” he said.
“What’s going on here is a joke.
“It’s ridiculous. We are like a third world country.”
Methven Lodge and BnB co-owner Lindy Millar said it was disheartening during what was a busy time of year.
“They’re (guests) shocked that we have this issue,” she said.
“We can all understand if it was a one-off but its becoming more frequent.”