Electric current shock to irrigators
MORE than 30 irrigators in the North-East are affected by an electric current running through an irrigation pipeline.
However, Tasmanian Irrigation says farmers in the Winnaleah scheme could access their water allocations but must work cautiously.
TI chief executive Nicola Morris said farmers needed to adopt safe work practices and TI was checking each outlet to ensure they are safe.
TI was informed last week a low-voltage power current, believed to be transmitted from a nearby wind farm, had been detected in the pipeline.
“The electric current has been a long-term issue with massive intervention since it was built, it was again resolved late December but then last week we were advised it had reappeared,” she said.
“We are working on finding out why that has happened.”
Dairy farmer Alan Davenport said a meeting on Monday discussed how irrigators could safely access the water.
“We haven’t said they can’t access the water, we’ve just said don’t touch the pipeline to do it,” Mr Davenport said.
“It’s a continuous AC voltage and that’s what makes it risky. The voltages are in the vicinity of 15 volts.”
“We need to make sure anybody coming into contact with the scheme is trained to manage the voltage risk.”