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Winter Works completed early

Murray Irrigation has successfully completed it’s winter maintenance works early, which again focused on bridge and culvert restoration and upgrades around the Finley, Deniliquin and Wakool areas.  This allowed the company to divert 32,000ML during recent supplementary water events.

Lachie Knight, Executive General Manager Infrastructure, said the crucial maintenance works were completed safely, under budget and well ahead of schedule.

“We thank all those who took the traffic control measures seriously, which allowed us to safely complete these critical life-extending works.

“Murray Irrigation is responsible for maintaining roughly 500 public bridges, spread out over 7,000 square kilometres in a safe condition. Most of these bridges were built 70-80 years ago.

“This is a significant responsibility and one we take seriously. Unfortunately, this means we must drain channels on a regular basis” he said.

“This year was the first using our new approach to the winter maintenance period, where each year we drain only one third of our canals and channels.

This approach allows us to store water through winter, which was a critical enabler for our 5% Allocation Advance. It also provides two-thirds of customers with limited irrigation opportunities while maintenance is carried out on the other third.

Halfway through Murray Irrigation’s scheduled maintenance program, the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment announced a historically early supplementary water event, with no advance notice.

“Immediately upon being informed of the event, our maintenance teams replanned and accelerated the works, which allowed the successful diversion of 32,000ML of supplementary water.

“About half of this water was delivered on-farm, with the balance recently provided back to shareholders through the company’s WaterWell products, including the Resource Distribution.

Lachie thanked Murray Irrigation’s field staff for their significant efforts to fast-track the company’s maintenance work, which allowed access to water through the unscheduled and opportunistic supplementary water event.

“This team performed outstandingly and need to be acknowledged. It was only because of their dedication and hard work that water was able to be diverted and add value to our farmers and the broader regional community,” Lachie concluded.

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Media contact: Donna McFeeters – 0418 111 829