A better video will be uploaded, hopefully, tomorrow.
here is a youtube version

and an MP4

Sources quoted or cited in this article (as of 9.32pm)

Unfortunately, our State Government elected representative, Kim Richards, has chosen to disbelieve all the posts that have been uploaded since Friday night. She has instead opted for her now-infamous “Fake News” rantings.
Actually, a very clever ploy. It has the effect of ‘tripping’ a switch in the Facebook algorithms, which has caused me to receive, at least one, warning. It is difficult to be sure, however. But bandying about #fakenews is not a nice thing to do.

My source for all of this, apart from conversations with Seqwater and messages left with the RCC media department, also received the following at 6pm on Friday 07/05:

Hi Tim my name Is James Selwood from Redland City Council I tried to call to let you know , yes the water main has been reported thank you and has been a gentleman by the name of Chris Zahn.

Chris has asked me to “clear the decks” as they say. So here are Chris’s own words, in two emails to myself.

7.44 pm 10/3/21

“To whom it may concern, I was wondering with the obvious future loss of water supply to Macleay Island due to leaking water mains Lucas passage, Lamb island to Macleay island .

 I was wondering has RCCouncil employees that go to the meetings that we all have heard they have when we want to be in contact to get resolution to a drawn out on going situation . 

The studies of costings ,impact , bla, bla,bla we’ve all read them , heard them , the one paid by RCC for the bridge from Macleay Island to Lamb island that was a beauty but authorised payment for it anyway by RCCouncil employees with our money . 
I was wondering have they accumulated pallets bottled water in readiness on Macleay Island . This is a biggy have they contacted water truck operator’s to via our fire hydrants pressurizing our water mains like other councils do or hasn’t that been discussed yet in a meeting and they’ll sort that out next time didn’t see that coming.
 I was also wondering if we would be asked to perge our water lines by turning on our household taps for several hours to clear the lines through our water metres at our cost . 
I was wondering has RCCouncil taken any step’s to look after the RCCouncil rate payer’s before the situation which is going to happen shortly and will take quite a while to fix . 
We need water for basic needs , fire , bottled water just doesn’t achieve this RCCouncil . 
I was just wondering what’s in place now RCCouncil .
I hope this helps you help us RCCouncil . 
PS I have no intentions of applying for a job with RCCouncil in the future Chris Zahn Macleay island “.

8.55 pm 10/03/21

“I have been onsite with a RCCouncil employee to inspect the water mains leakage from Lamb island to Macleay Island after I found it and reported it to RCCouncil by phone on-site.
I have been onsite with several Seqwater employees on several occasions to inspect the water mains leakage to show one and all how to get to the site because of the ocean floor bottom change in consistency and my local knowledge of the area . It has been said to me in discussing the current situation with above people it’s a big problem and it could burst at any point in time and the leakage is increasing .
I did not see or hear anybody onsite disagree that the water mains could burst at any point in time due to the leakage . If anybody outside this circle of experts I have been onsite talking with disagrees with them and myself I think they are full of B .S.
They should put thing’s in place to assist prior to the obvious fact Macleay island will loose it’s water supply at some point in the near future because of the above and wipe their chins it’s not a good look. Chris Zahn Macleay island
On Sun., 9 May 2021, 5:59 pm Chris Zahn,  wrote:
No that’s a probe to feel for the broken pipe to find out how deep it’s buried.
On Sun., 9 May 2021, 5:48 pm Tim,  wrote:

Hi Chris,
Is that yellow pole a fishing rod (or the size of one) for comparison?

Thanks again,



I have been in touch with SEQ water by email:

OK, here is the email that I sent to SEQ water, as requested, at 3pm:
I was speaking with Cassandra today.
I have a story and pictures supplied by Chris Zahn. here is the site. If you could just have a look and check it for me? Started uploading it on Friday evening.


There have been more inspections.

In conversation with Chris he mentioned a contact of his in the Gold Coast City Council has regular problems like this, They isolate the area bring in a tanker and hook it up to a fire main to supply water. Good idea, one wonders if there have been any similar plans made. I don’t think bottled water will do the trick this time!

It is official now. Chris will be performing daily inspections and sending the pictures to myself and to SWQ water – so there you have it. A direct, independent news source.

Probably a daily occurrence for a while, due to tides. Still haven’t found the location, but it is estimated to be under 1,5 metres of mud. At high tide another 2 metres of water.
Nobody really knows what to do. Here are some considerations
1. Build a caisson , basically a waterproof box. Vut you would need another 2 metres of depth to be able to stand down there to wBut where to put it?

2. Chris suggested barges from Atoll Logistics to locate the leak.

3. Myself and Chris think that running a replacement pipe is the only realistic and workable option. The locations of both ends are known, dislocation could be minimised.


From L to R: At first, it was a bubbling hole the size of a 30c coin. Then (middle) it grew to the size of a basketball. The right picture is of the Councils probe, about the size of a two-metre fishing rod



“Update on broken and leaking but not burst as yet water mains from Lamb island to Macleay. After the water mains inspected today a couple of ideas to repair the broken water mains were thrown around. One thought is to reweld the pipe and another is to replace the pipe. Because it’s underwater and under mud, it’s a big challenge and could take week’s to repair. So small water tanks may be a need for some households to consider with this being a fairly regular occurrence on the island.
Chris Zahn Macleay island.”

In conversation, we also discussed the possibility of replacing the entire length from Lamb to Macleay. Macleay is also the only island to be affected as it at the ‘end of the line’ for water supply.

Access to the break is also problematic, as it is increasing in size on a daily basis, from the size of a 50 cent piece to the size of a basketball today, Chris reported.

The construction of a Caisson could be needed, as tides and daylight hour availability of access as an issue. That alone is a major undertaking, the alternative being perhaps long term usage of Atoll Logistics barge fleet. Atoll floated (ahem) the idea of a short-haul route from Rocky Point to the mainland some months ago.



Local Macleay resident, Chris Zahn, reports that the pipe connecting Lamb to Macleay is in imminent danger of breaking.

Taking pictures aboard a boat in Lucas Passage with Redland City Council inspectors, Chris reported that SEQ water will be inspecting the situation tomorrow.
The sound of the water exiting the main, underground was quite clearly audible. The pictures show the difference in water colour.

Prudence dictates that residents fill water containers. While there is no official announcement yet, presumably the official wheels are turning. Being after 5pm, it is difficult to contact the council.

As of 6pm, I was contacted by a Council Official, James Selwood, who authorised a release of this information. He confirmed that a Council Officer with Chris Zahn, attended the scene. He further agreed that residents of Macleay and/or Lamb should seriously consider storing water as a precaution.

More to come.

At about 7.20pm Chris sent me the following clarification. I had incorrectly assumed that while he was “in the water’ he was in a boat:

“Tim the RCC worker did our inspection via gumboots at low tide not via a boat and he put a star picket and float to mark for further work’s information.”

Note the change in colour between the freshwater rising from below the surface.

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