Fluoride Action Network

Brisbane: Fluoride rose to double usual concentration at weekend, forcing closure of water treatment plant

Source: The Courier-Mail | August 5th, 2013 | By Robyn Ironside
Location: Australia

BRISBANE’S fluoride plant was shut down at the weekend after levels at the Mt Crosby water treatment jumped to almost double their usual concentration.

An Seqwater spokeswoman said there was never any threat to public health, but the fluoride levels did reach 1.7mg/L in one of two service reservoirs for about ten minutes Friday night.

Seqwater is required to notify the Queensland Water Supply Regulator (QWSR) if fluoride levels exceed 1.5mg/L.

The spokeswoman said the elevated level of fluoride never actually made it into drinking supplies.

“While dosing levels varied, the multiple layers of control and monitoring in place ensured no water was supplied into the drinking system above 1.5mg/L,” she said.

“The QWSR was notified as required and they advised that the disruption did not pose a health risk. Queensland Urban Utilities was also advised.”

Under the Water Fluoridation Regulation 2008, Seqwater is required to produce fluoridated water of between 0.7mg/L and 0.9mg/L averaged over a quarter.

The spokeswoman said Seqwater was still confident the target rate would be achieved over the July-September quarter.

Last year, LNP MP Jason Woodforth made headlines when he revealed more than a third of his colleagues wanted fluoride to be removed from Queensland’s water supplies.

It followed the Newman Government’s decision to hand back the power to local authorities to decide if water supplies should be fluoridated.

Mr Woodforth has described fluoride as a brain-altering poison but has come up against strong opposition from Education Minister John-Paul Langbroek – a former dentist.

Although some councils have opted to go without fluoride in their drinking water, Brisbane City Council continues to allow fluoridated water – which has been shown to make a significant difference to consumers’ dental health.