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GALLERY: This is how deployed soldiers purify water from dams, rivers and lakes

Sapper I. Metiso enjoying the nicely packaged water. | Lorraine Choma

Sapper I. Metiso enjoying the nicely packaged water. | Lorraine Choma

Published May 15, 2022

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Durban – The SANDF – deployed for Operation Chariot in KwaZulu-Natal – has revealed how deployed soldiers purify water from dams, rivers and lakes.

In a joint statement by Captain Tshegofatso Gwai and Corporal Chamba, the Engineer Squadron deployed under the Joint Tactical Headquarters in KZN for Disaster Relief is responsible for the water purification during the Operation Chariot mission.

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Sappers Corporal LE Chamba, TL Mahloko and PM Ndlangisa draw water from a source. Picture: Lorraine Choma
Sapper A Bam | Picture; Lorraine Choma

The water is drawn from the source (dam) to the sedimentation tanks, then from the sedimentation tanks through the filtration process to the purifier.

After the water has been purified it is stored in a bladder tank. The purified water from the bladder tank is then drawn to the sachet plant for packaging.

The sedimentation process takes place in the two S-tanks. Picture: Lorraine Choma
Corporal L.E. Chamba setting up the machines. | Lorraine Choma

The water from the source, after being purified, is tested for the following: PH, electrical conductivity, temperature, total chlorine, iron, aluminium, nitrates, turbidity and total dissolved units.

Corporal LE Chamba setting up the machines. Picture; Lorraine Choma
The water purification team is busy with the testing kit. (Sappers A Bam, I Mahlangu and KJ Khupelo. Picture: Lorraine Choma

Further testing is facilitated by SA Military Health Services members deployed to Operation Chariot. The water samples are taken for further laboratory testing. After the final results are issued, that the water is consumable, the packaging of water begins.

Corporal LE Chamba and Sapper is VI Ditlholelo. Picture: Lorraine Choma
The packaging process. (Sappers I Metiso and DG Khoza. Picture: Lorraine Choma

The plant produces 1 000 sachets of 500ml per hour without rejects or faults.

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The packaged water will be distributed by 17 Maintenance Unit for distribution in the communities around KwaZulu-Natal, as well as to deployed troops.

The packaged product in the sachet plant. (Sappers DG Khoza, I Metiso and I Mahlangu. | Lorraine Choma

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