Articles & Case Studies

Water Experts Carry Out Cleaning Project in Loch Calder

Posted: Friday 4th February 2011

Water quality engineering firm Panton McLeod has completed another high profile cleaning project that will keep drinking water supplies at their purest levels in the Highlands.

The firm - which is the UK’s leading expert in cleaning, repairing and inspecting structures used to store drinking water – successfully cleaned one of the main storage tanks at a water treatment works in Caithness in order to maintain purity levels for customers in the region.

The project saw a team from Panton McLeod drain millions of litres of water from the tank at the Loch Calder water treatment works before removing a build up of natural materials from the floor of the facility. The routine work ensures there is no chance for turbidity issues to arise in the water supply.

Nigel Owen, team supervisor with Panton McLeod, said: “This was an important project for us to be involved with, as Loch Calder is a prestigious facility in Scotland. It was opened by Prince Charles less than a decade ago, and this was the first time that the tank had been completely drained – so it was vital to make sure everything went like clockwork during the cleaning work.

“These structures need to be cleaned regularly to ensure that the drinking water stored in them remains as pure as possible. Sometimes you can do this while the tanks are still active and on-line, but in this case we actually drained the main tank, took it out of service and deployed a team of engineers to physically clean the structure.

“We had five lads who spent more than two days cleaning – and they removed all of the material that had naturally built up on the floor of the tank. Although this natural build-up poses no threat to customers, it is important to remove it so that there is no turbidity in the water supply.

“This kind of routine work always has to be meticulously planned in order to guarantee that no pressure is put on the supply of water. We liaised extensively with Scottish Water to ensure that the cleaning work was carried out as swiftly as possible with no disruption whatsoever to customers’ supplies.”

Simon Harrison, Scottish Water Operations Manager, added: "The kind of work Panton McLeod carried out for us is essential and we're pleased with the result, particularly as it didn't disrupt supplies for customers.

“We supply clear, fresh drinking water to Caithness and North Sutherland from the Loch Calder plant and this piece of maintenance helps us continue to do so."

Borders-based Panton McLeod regularly provides a range of cleaning, inspection and repair services for Scottish Water across the whole of the country. It also works with some of the biggest names in the water sector – including Severn Trent Water and Welsh Water – to provide similar services throughout the UK.

In addition to traditional drain down projects, the firm has also pioneered the use of innovative underwater robots which can be used to clean and inspect service reservoirs or tanks while they are still online – further minimising disruption to customers’ supplies.

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