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Thursday 26 February 2015

Send Water - and they did...

Well it's arriving anyway.  I was at the pier at the mid-morning boat and lots of activity.  A smart van is at the pier for the Scottish Water workmen, of whom there seem to be quite a few.

There are lots of blue tanks filled with water which are being taken up to pump into the system.

We've had more visitors, this time from Environmental Health and animal welfare to make sure farmers and folk have all they need.  They are handing round leaflets from the Orkney Local Emergency Co-ordinating group giving local information numbers and advice.on community safety while we are without piped water. The MV Graemsay has been doing extra runs too with equipment and people.

It started out a bonny sunny day, but it's very chilly.  So I feel for the folk working out with rain forecast later.

And here is our water tank.  Almost the highest point on Graemsay.  Not quite as simple as opening the hatch and pouring water in but hopefully there will be water in the pipes soon and backfilling the tank.  Then we can start getting water our of our taps

Folk have been asking about wells etc.  There are a few houses with their own private water supply via spring water.  But the rest of us are connected up to the mains.  Although most houses would have used a well in the past, they have fallen into disuse and without pumps and nearby electricity it's not possible to get the water to where it's needed at short notice.  And we'd still need drinking water supplied as the water would not have been tested and being out of use for so many years then it could have got contaminated and be unfit for use.

Sandside has a well but it's in the field (to wet to get a tractor over it), and no pipes or pump to get it up to the house. I had mains water installed when I moved into the house in 2000.  Though I did suggest to a neighbour he could use the well water for his livestock if necessary.  However contingency plans were suggested as there is water in the quarry that could have been used for livestock. And may in fact be used yet.  But again it's getting it pumped out and into containers and distributed around the island to the farms.

The sheep are out in the fields and many have burns running through them so the sheep will be fine. Plus there's a lot of standing water as it's rained so much lately!  Even my hens prefer the puddles to the nice clear water I put in the henny house!  Button too tends to drink out of the puddles.... But the cattle in the sheds need water taken to them - they can't open the bottled water with their hooves - hee hee...

Dr Trevett from the Stromness surgery has been phoning to check on patients, and a local councillor phoned to check if there was anything else that the council could do to help.  Mostly we keep saying -just keep sending water!!

I am now hallucinating about a hot shower.....


  1. Thanks for filling in the background, Sian. Those big blue tanks must be a reassuring sight until the problem is fixed.

  2. well I guess it's positive that things are being done.

  3. Goodness, no water is a serious emergency! Relieved to hear that the islanders are being looked after. We had the same experience last year - a leak in the private supply meant suddenly no water for us or several nearby cottages - and it put all other problems, like power cuts, into perspective. The first hot shower after we got an emergency tank and pump fitted up was THE best shower ever. Hope you get yours soon!

  4. Goodness, we are in a drought here in California, so I can relate that even the thought of no water is stressful. It sounds like people are being active in doing what needs to be done to solve your water problem.