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The original item was published from 7/17/2019 2:08:27 PM to 8/18/2019 12:00:01 AM.

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Posted on: July 17, 2019

[ARCHIVED] July 17th Public Water System Update

  1. As of this morning’s visual inspection of the raw water reservoir, the algae bloom has disappeared. 
  2. We will continue to treat the raw water per ODEQ recommendations for this type of algae. As a reminder, the water is safe to drink and use. 
  3. To increase the turnover rate of the treated water already in the system (which will continue to harbor the “earthy” taste and smell until the treated water volume has turned over), we will flush the lines later this week. Because flushing lines can temporarily increase the turbidity (coloration / cloudiness) of the water, we will post when we intend to begin that work. Flushing will turn the water volume over faster and we will more quickly return to a normal taste/smell for our water system. 
  4. We want to share a few important facts about our water and water treatment system — we’re aware many people are posting various opinions, “experience,” and “facts” and we want to ensure the public has the facts easily accessible. 
  5. Our raw water (reservoir of untreated water) is sampled daily and checked for pH levels, alkalinity, turbidity, and hardness. No out-of-the-ordinary results were logged in the timeframe before or during the algae bloom. 
  6. The reservoir has an 8-acre surface. It is entirely possible to sample it daily and not visually see an algae bloom at one edge/in one area. 
  7. When reports came in to Public Works that citizens were reporting the taste and smell of the water had changed, staff made a full visual inspection of the entire surface and found a single algae bloom on the water. Treatment per our normal operations began immediately. 
  8. After consultation with ODEQ, additional treatment per their recommendations began Friday, July 12th. 
  9. Per ODEQ requirements, we test multiple samples from our treated water system at varying points across the system each week. Results from those tests must be submitted to ODEQ. Our treated water system has passed every sample test, every week, for the previous 24 months. The water is, has been, and will continue to be, safe to drink and use. 
  10. This type of algae bloom is extremely common in the midwest in the summer because weather conditions are favorable for its growth. ODEQ does not recommend “proactive” treatment with the chemicals used to combat a bloom. While the treatment is safe for consumption, it can have a negative effect over time on the infrastructure of the system. 
  11. Finally, we know the less than ideal taste and smell is inconvenient and disruptive to daily routines, and we apologize for that. Please know we are working diligently to return the system to normal water characteristics.  

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