• John Jantak

Vaudreuil-Dorion takes company to court for malfunctioning ozone water treatment system


PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK

Vaudreuil-Dorion announced that it is bringing Mabarex, a water technology company, to court for installing a water ozone treatment system that allegedly has not worked properly since it was installed about five years ago.

Vaudreuil-Dorion has taken legal action against Mabarex, a Montreal-based company that supplied and installed the ozone water treatment system at the city’s water filtration plant nearly five years ago, claiming the system has not worked properly ever since installation.

The issue was raised during the October 9 council meeting when it was revealed that the city had retained professional legal services from the firm Dufresne Hébert Comeau that will present the city’s case in Quebec Superior Court.

Mayor Guy Pilon bluntly stated that the city’s decision to proceed with legal action was necessary because the system “doesn’t work.” Pilon added that the only reason Mabarex was chosen over other suppliers was because their bid came in at $1 million, about half the cost of bids for ozone systems that were tendered by other suppliers.

Under provincial laws governing municipal tendering procedures and protocol, Pilon said the city had no option but to accept the tender made by Mabarex because the company submitted the lowest bid.

Despite reportedly working with Mabarex personnel to correct the problems, all attempts made by city personnel to resolve various issues by implementing proposed fixes that were designed to resolve problems and bring the system to full functionality, repeatedly failed. Pilon said the result left the city with no other recourse than to settle the matter in court.

Pilon added that the City of St. Jerome has also taken legal action against Mabarex for problems it encountered after the same ozone water treatment system was purchased and installed at their water filtration facility.

“We’ve tried over the past four to five years to fix the problem with Mabarex, but it was impossible. We tried our best but it didn’t work out” said Pilon. He added that both cities apparently are the only municipalities in the province that had the Mabarex ozone water treatment system installed in their facilities.

The city’s legal representatives have also been mandated to use the professional services of the engineering firm Stantec to prepare a report and give expert testimony about the Mabarex system when the case is heard in court.

Pilon said the difficulties encountered with its ozone system never affected the quality of water provided to its residents because city’s water specialists and technicians use adequate workaround procedures to maintain the purity of its water supplies, especially during the warmer summer months.

“We paid for a system and expected good results,” said Pilon. “Mabarex was obliged to provide us a fully functional system but they didn’t. Now we going to remove their ozone water treatment system and install a new system so there will be no more problems.”

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