Water Main Break/ Discolored Water
April 27, 2018
S.S. Water Supply Corp. News
At Approximately 5:30 PM on April 26, 2018 our emergency standby person was notified of a water main break in Bridgewater Subdivision by the home owner who stated the water was coming from the ground so fast that her property was being flooded. At about the same time or slightly before we started to receive calls of discolored water in Copper Creek, Vintage Oaks, Wood Valley, Eden’s Crossing and Whispering Oaks.
Why does a break like this cause folks in the area to experience discolored water? The ground water source (some of the best groundwater in the Country) has some naturally occurring minerals such as iron and magnesium in the water. The iron and magnesium are of sufficient quantity that it requires treatment. The minerals are not harmful, but discolored water is not palatable to our customers and we try very hard to ensure clear drinking water delivered to your tap. The process that we use to make that happen, is to sequester the iron and magnesium with a polyphosphate. This process protects the iron and magnesium from being oxidized and causing the discoloration. The sequestered iron and polyphosphate coats the inside of the PVC water mains and will remain there until events like a water main break occurs. The increase in water rushing through the mains or water changing direction in the mains will cause some of the coating to become dislodged and discolor the water.
Our crews immediately jumped into action. After putting in a regular shift, 5 field employees came back to work and put in an additional 6 hours of labor intensive work. About a 10-foot piece of 6-inch line plus a connection 2-inch road crossing had to be dug up, cut out and replaced. Crews finished just after midnight and started a flushing sequence that will restore clear water to the distribution system affected by this event. Crews are back early this morning assessing the situation and expanding the flushing sequence, but this process could take a few days to complete. We ask our members to contact us directly and report any discolored water, this helps us determine flushing sequence and allows us to better plot the neighborhoods that need attention.
The water is potable (safe to drink), but we understand our responsibility is to ensure the water also looks good enough to drink (palatable). We ask for your patience, but as always, we will work long and hard hours until the problem is resolved.