Upper Hunter Shire Council accepted the first septic waste delivery at Aberdeen Sewage Treatment Plant on Friday , 11 March 2016. Pump out contractors for the Upper Hunter Shire who were previously going to the Scone facility, are now able to use Aberdeen.
The new location should have no impact on any of the owners of the 2350 registered on-site sewage management systems in the Upper Hunter Shire however Council has written to them all explaining why the change was needed.
Upper Hunter Shire Council General Manager Waid Crockett said the Aberdeen facility has more than sufficient capacity for the shire’s current needs and is a good interim solution after the closure of the Scone septic disposal in February at the direction of the Environment Protection Authority (EPA).
“The Aberdeen plant is being used as a temporary measure and Council is investigating options to build or upgrade another septic disposal facility in the Shire,” Mr Crockett said.
The first load was 3100 litres from the holiday park at Lake Glenbawn delivered by Eddie Bridge of Scone Septics. It took 20 minutes for the load to be pumped out on a low setting. “This seems to be working okay,” Mr Bridge said.
Council’s Manager Water and Waste, Paul Turri said every load that went to the plant was documented, loads would be randomly tested and all loads are diluted with water in the inlet chamber of the sewage plant.
The Aberdeen plant has spare capacity to allow up to 5 kilolitres of septic waste in a 24 hour period. Over one year, the Aberdeen plant can accept up to 1800 kilolitres of septic waste. Over the last three years, the Scone facility received less than half that - a total of 766 kilolitres.
“Even in the unlikely event of Aberdeen reaching capacity on a given day, three of the pump out contractors who had used the Scone septic facility - J R Richards, CAC Transport and Hunter Septics - are also licensed to drop off at septic facilities outside the Upper Hunter,” Mr Turri said.
Brett Hamey of Hunter Septics said it was good that Upper Hunter Shire Council was still offering septic disposal facilities in the shire, as many councils did not.
“It’s not a problem for us to take septic to a facility outside the shire if an emergency pump out is needed,” Mr Hamey said.
“However if an owner has waited too long to have the septic pumped out, that could cost more in the long run.
“Have your tank pumped out on a regular basis, at least every three to five years.”
Mr Turri said the biggest problems came from foreign objects getting into septic tanks.
“We’ve seen bricks, children’s toys, nappies, even a beach towel causing a blockage,” Mr Turri said.
“The golden rule is ‘the loo is just for poo’. If you don’t look after your septic, it won’t work and it will cost you more.”
Upper Hunter Shire Council
Phone: 6540 1100
Upper Hunter Shire Council is a local government authority and provides an extensive array of services including health and building; town planning; aged care; sporting and recreational facilities; roads; libraries; garbage collection; airport facilities; saleyards; public venues; water; children, youth and families and tourist information.