Terms and conditions for hiring and using a Barwon Water Smart Pipe

Guidelines for applicants

Customers can apply to access Barwon Water's drinking water supply via designated fireplugs. This access is provided via a Smart Pipe supplied by Barwon Water.

Customers wishing to hire a Smart Pipe must read these terms and conditions of supply before completing an application form.

Barwon Water will review applications and send a notification email or a letter to advise the applicants formally if a permit has been approved. During water restrictions, all applications will be assessed in accordance with water restriction guidelines.

These terms and conditions only apply to water accessed via fireplugs in Barwon Water's service region.

Conditions of hire

Smart Pipe hire and ownership

The Hirer is any person, company or authority representative who signs an agreement to hire a Smart Pipe from Barwon Water.

The Smart Pipe remains the property of Barwon Water.

Supply of water

The Hirer may only draw water from a designated filling point. These are approved by Barwon Water and a list of those sites is provided at the time of hire and is available at any time from Barwon Water by contacting 1300 656 007.

Drawing water from non-approved locations is an offence under the Water Act and may result in prosecution against the Hirer.

In some circumstances and for short-term requirements the approval of additional sites may be provided. To request this approval the Hirer must contact Barwon Water prior to using any other site. Barwon Water will provide any approval in writing.

Barwon Water cannot provide any guarantee of water pressure at any of the designated filling points

Barwon Water reserves the right to restrict/prevent access to any or all of the designated filling points during unusual circumstances such as drought or other unavoidable causes or incidents.


The Hirer consents that Barwon Water staff or contractors can enter the Hirer's property or work location to inspect, read, repair or remove the Smart Pipe.

Barwon Water will maintain and repair the hydrant for ordinary wear and tear using authorised repairers.

Fee notification and changes

All fees related to Smart Pipes will be provided at the time of initial hire. Fees are subject to change and any such change will be notified via an updated schedule available on the Barwon Water website

Charge Outline

Volume charges

Consumption will be billed on a quarterly basis using the data received from the Smart pipe or via a reading taken from the display of the smart pipe.

Service fee

A service fee is a yearly charge calculated at a prorated rate based on the number of days in the billing period.

Security deposit

The Hirer is required to pay a deposit to Barwon Water. This charge will be provisioned on the first bill for the Smart Pipe usage.

This deposit is used to provide security against any damages to the Smart Pipe.

In the case that the hire period ends and the Smart Pipe is returned with no damage or separate charges to cover that damage are paid in full, the security will be returned.


A Hirer can apply to have the accuracy of their Smart Pipe tested at any time. The Hirer will be required to pay a fee for the Smart Pipe testing when the application is made.

Smart Pipe testing will be done in accordance with procedures recommended by the manufacturer

If testing finds the Smart Pipe to be inaccurate, it will be repaired or replaced. The testing fee paid by the Hirer will be refunded and an adjustment will be made to the account based on the quantity of water used.

If testing finds the Smart Pipe to be reading accurately, the pipe will be returned to the Hirer and Barwon Water will retain the testing fee.

Damages and Replacement

The Hirer is responsible for the charges associated with repair or replacement of a Smart Pipe that is damaged or lost whilst in their custody, whether this damage has been done with or without their knowledge or involvement.

A replacement Smart Pipe will not be issued until the cost for repairing or replacing a damaged Smart Pipe is paid.

Bill Payment

The Hirer is required to the pay the bill by nominated due date.

If payment in full is unable to be made by the due date, the hirer must contact Barwon Water to advise as soon as possible. Barwon Water may allow a formal payment plan based on reasonable commercial considerations.

If charges are not paid by the due date or a payment plan is not formalised, Barwon Water will carry out collection actions which may include referral to a debt collection agent for debt recovery activity.

Continued overdue or unpaid (verified) charges may result in the Smart Pipe being withdrawn from the Hirer.

Maintenance of Smart pipe

From time to time, it will be necessary for Barwon Water or its contractor to inspect or replace the Smart Pipe. To facilitate this an appointment time will be requested and it is incumbent on the hirer to take all reasonable steps to secure an agreed time.

Unless the original appointment time is rescheduled, it is expected that the hirer will attend the agreed location at the agreed time.

Barwon Water reserves the right to request the collection, if the hirer fails to meet these appointments

Interference with Smart Pipe

In accordance with current Water Industry By-Laws and Regulations, it is an offence to interfere with any meter owned by Barwon Water and penalties may apply.

Changes to these conditions

Barwon Water reserves the right to change these conditions of hire at any time. Changes to the conditions of hire will be in line with management or operational purposes as required. Hirers will be provided with updated terms and conditions as they become available via the Barwon Water website.

This agreement is not transferable

The Hirer cannot transfer this agreement to any other person, company or authority without the written consent of Barwon Water.

Requirements for using a Smart Pipe

  • Smart Pipe may only be used within Barwon Water's service area
  • Smart Pipes should not be left unattended
  • Hose protection ramps should be used on roadways or footpaths
  • Hoses must be in good working order and free from leaks
  • Removal of dirt and debris from the fire plug is required to help prevent blockage and damage to the pipe
  • Faulty fire plugs are to be reported to Barwon Water
  • Any faults i.e. leaks, cracks, seals, display, miscellaneous damage to the Smart Pipe must be reported to Barwon Water immediately
  • Maintain optimum performance and meter reading accuracy by ensuring flow rates remain between 5-15 litres per second as displayed on the Smart Pipe dial when using it
  • In order to avoid damage, it is recommended to store the Smart Pipe in a secure location on the vehicle and it should be kept upright to avoid unnecessary damage

Operation of Smart Pipes

The following steps are required to be adhered to by the Hirer to operate Smart Pipes:

  • The base of the Smart Pipe is to be secured firmly on the fire plug
  • The operating handle should be turned slowly to allow a small amount of water to be released and to make sure the Smart Pipe is sealing properly on the fire plug.
  • If the water supply is turned on or off too quickly, the water mains or service pipes could be damaged. The hirer will be responsible for any repair costs to damaged water mains if the damage was a result of misuse.
  • Do not turn the Smart Pipe on fully as the fire plug can get jammed and the Smart Pipe will be prevented from turning off.

Returning Smart Pipe

When the hirer does not require the Smart Pipe and wishes to end the charges, the Hirer will need to advise Barwon Water by calling 1300 656 007.

Barwon Water can then arrange for the Smart Pipe to be collected or can arrange with the Hirer to drop off the Smart Pipe at an agreed location in the Barwon Water region.


Non-compliance with the requirements for use of a Smart Pipe will be dealt with in the following manner:

  • 1st instance – the Hirer will be advised by Barwon Water, either by phone or in writing, that they must cease any such practice
  • 2nd instance – the Hirer’s entitlement to utilise a Smart Pipe will be removed and the Smart Pipe will require immediate return to Barwon Water.

Backflow protection

If a water-carrying vehicle is collecting water via a Smart Pipe, the vehicle must be fitted with an approved air gap or reduced pressure zone device to provide backflow protection. This will maintain a positive air gap between the outlet of the hose and the overflow level of the tank.

Further information

For more information, contact us.

Information regarding the safe transportation of water can be found in the Guide for water carting business at www2.health.vic.gov.au