The Lithgow City Council Mayor, Maree Statham has called for a significant improvement to information flow about the current lack of gas supply across the city.
Overnight on Thursday 3 November, an APA owned and operated gas main failed, impacting Bathurst, Wallerawang, Lithgow and Oberon areas.
The Council is working closely with the Emergency Operations Centre operating out of Bathurst to manage this issue.
“I cannot overstate the importance of good communication to all those who are impacted,” said Lithgow City Council’s Mayor, Councillor Maree Statham. “We understand that there are around 5400 properties that are affected by this event. These include residences and businesses. By our calculations more than 13 000 people may be affected. Those people need to know what the situation is.”
“The Thales group’s Lithgow operations have also been affected. Unable to run their furnaces, production lines have started to stop, impacting business and the workers. Business needs to know what the facts are and how long this will impact them“
“So far, I am bitterly disappointed in the communications by the companies responsible for the pipeline repair and the supply of gas. There has been almost total absence of advice about the situation, and how long supply will be stopped for.”
“I call on both Jemena and the APA group to communicate – now and often as we go forward.
“Lithgow Council is doing everything possible to assist the local community,” said Mayor Statham. “Council staff are making available all available bathing facilities at sportsgrounds and recreation centres. We are leasing additional gas bottles and have hired shower blocks to set up for residents at the Tony Luchetti Sportsground. Once a plan is developed, this will be communicated broadly with the community.”
Mayor Statham added, “Council has worked to ensure a local presence by the pipeline company APA while this situation progresses. Council is working directly with vulnerable community groups, but we will continue to press for this direct engagement and provide advice to the community once details are known.”