Water quality

Water fit for human consumption is called potable water or drinking water. Water that is not fit for drinking but is not harmful for humans when used for recreational purposes may be called various names including treated recreational water or natural water. In Western Australia different types of water are regulated or monitored by different government departments.

Treated recreational water

Aquatic facilities

Aquatic facilities being all public pools and spas, are regulated and monitored by Local Government with support from the Department of Health.

The City of Fremantle’s environmental health services team samples each public pool and spa within the City of Fremantle once a month, testing the water quality to ensure it is safe to swim or bathe in. Parameters for testing include level of chemical disinfection, pH, temperature, bacteria and amoeba.

Samples are measured against the standards set out in the Code of practice for the design, construction, operation, management and maintenance of aquatic facilities.

Natural water


Beaches are monitored by the Department of Health with support from local government.

The City’s four beaches (Bathers Beach, Leighton Beach, South Beach and Port Beach) are  sampled during November to April for bacterial quality as part of the state government’s annual health swimming survey.

The City’s beaches have each recorded a green beach grade over the past years of sampling. This means that the water quality is of a high standard and is safe for swimming. The results of testing are collaborated yearly with other local governments and displayed on the healthy swimming website.

The estuary and rivers

The estuary and rivers are monitored by the Swan River Trust and Department of Water. The Swan River Trust and Department of Water, conduct routine water quality monitoring at more than 30 sites spread throughout the estuary. The Swan River Trust also monitors the water quality entering the Swan and Canning rivers.

The Department of Health's how safe are natural waterways brochures have more information on natural waterways.

Drinking water

Scheme water

Scheme water is supplied and tested by the Water Corporation of Western Australia, managed by the Department of Water and regulated by the Department of Health.

For information on drinking water, guidelines and links to resources, visit the Department of Health’s website. Or for information on the supply and monitoring of drinking water visit the water quality section of the Water Corporations website.

Rain water tanks

The Department of Health’s website has more information on rain water collection.

Rain water tanks are an excellent source of providing non-potable water to your household for the toilet and laundry, washing your car and watering the garden.  

In terms of the City's position on water sustainability for new developments, please refer to local planning policy 2.2 part A clause 3 and part B - Water. The City's policy recommends that new lots developments include installation of at least a 3000 litre rainwater tank plumbed to the toilet or washing machine.

Contact us

Environmental health service
City of Fremantle
Town Hall Centre
8 William Street
T 08 9432 9999
F 08 9432 9895
TTY 08 9432 9777