WITH extreme water restrictions imposed upon the city, one resident has called for infrastructure around Bathurst to be upgraded to ensure not one drop is wasted.
Hope Street resident David McKinnon grew concerned about the city's infrastructure after a water leak near his property took close to a week to find and repair.
He said Bathurst Regional Council workers first attributed the issue to a leak in the stormwater pipe, but further investigations revealed that wasn't the case.
They dug multiple holes along the nature strip in an effort to find the leak, with little success.
Mr McKinnon said a worker had also told him that there was a similar situation in Eglinton, where days had gone by without being able to identify a leak.
Mr McKinnon said that if leaks like this were common, there would be a lot of water being wasted at a time when residents were being told to conserve.
He calculated that 40 litres per minute was gushing out of the leak near his residence.
"If you multiple 40 litres a minute by 1440 minutes to get one day, times 365 days a year, that is a lot of water - almost 100,000 litres of water per year," he said.
Mr McKinnon said it was essential that council invested money in better water infrastructure, especially while water restrictions were in effect.
"The issue that [the director of Engineering] has to deal with is probably lack of money in his department to deal with these infrastructure problems, like leaky water mains, which shouldn't be leaking," he said.
Council's director of Engineering Services, Darren Sturgiss, said at times it can be difficult to identify the source of leak.
This is generally due to the location within the pipe and "not so much where the pipes are located in the city".
However, council is committed to improving water infrastructure.
"Council has a 450-kilometre network of water infrastructure across the city and has an ongoing program of upgrading older infrastructure," Mr Sturgiss said.
"The water main replacement program is targeted towards individual mains that have experienced multiple leaks."
He said it was important that residents report any leaks they identify to council so they can be investigated and repaired.
Level four-five (extreme) water restrictions were imposed in Bathurst on Monday after nearly 12 months on level three (high).
Tightening of restrictions means people can no longer water their lawns or fill up pools. Gardens can be watered, but only on Wednesdays and Sundays for half an hour at a time.
Residents are also asked to take four-minute showers or one bath per person per day, keeping the depth to no more than 150 millimetres.