Wellington switching water systems after EPA and Kansas Department of Health and Environment recommendations

Greg Williams
Wellington Daily News
Wellington water tower

After recommendations by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, Wellington will be switching its water system from chloramine to free chlorine.

Chloramine is a very stable and long-lasting disinfectant in water systems. As a maintenance activity to optimize the water quality of the distribution system, the water plant will switch to free chlorine for disinfection for a period of about one month, or until the distribution system has been completely flushed for the following reasons:

  • Remove any biofilm and bacteria from the water distribution system pipes.
  • Reduce the formation of nitrates and nitrites (nitrification).
  • Reduce any taste and odor complaints.

After distribution system flushing is completed, the water plant will resume disinfection utilizing chloramines.

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The water will be safe to drink and use as normal. Customers may notice slight discoloration/cloudiness or chlorine odor, but it is safe to use. Water users sensitive to chlorine or chloramine should take normal precautions.

Customers may see some of the following during this maintenance process:

  • A slight discoloration or cloudiness in the water;
  • A slight chlorine odor or taste;
  • Minor fluctuations in water pressures while flushing is occurring;
  • Minor discoloration in the water due to flushing the system;
  • Utility crews operating fire hydrants to flush the system.

Many customers may not notice any change in the water. Critical users such as hospitals, dialysis groups, pet/aquatic/pond companies, companies that use water for processing and other water users sensitive to chloramines or free chlorine should consult with their professionals about their internal treatment procedures.

If the water is discolored or cloudy, flush the water through an outside spigot or tub faucet for a few minutes to clear. By running the water through a spigot or tub faucet, the problem clears faster and if any debris particles have been stirred by flushing, it will not clog faucet strainers.