Water company: Residents may notice discolored water, still safe to drink

Brown County Water customers may see discolored water in their homes for the next few days following an issue at the water treatment plant that has now been corrected.

The water utility said that the water is safe for use and consumption. The night of Aug. 14 an alert was sent to customers about the discolored water, which was a result of the plant not capturing all of the iron residual during the treatment process. This caused “higher residuals to be distributed into the distribution system” said Justin Hawley, the general manager of Brown County Water Utility Inc.

“We will use this unfortunate incident to create more alarms and thresholds to help avoid these occurrences from happening in the future,” Hawley said.

The treatment plant is located in Morgantown off of Mahalasville Road. Currently Brown County Water has approximately 5,635 customers. Brown County Water provides water to homes in Brown and several surrounding counties, Hawley said.

He continued that it is difficult to determine which customers would experience the discolored water because it depends on where the iron was distributed.

“Certain parts of the distribution system — where we purchase water from Jackson County (south) and Citizens (north) — will not be affected,” Hawley said.

Currently crews are working to flush the distribution system until the problem is resolved, which could take a few days to work its way through the system. Using caution while doing laundry is recommended, Hawley said.

“We apologize for any inconvenience,” Hawley said.

Customers are encouraged to sign up for Brown County Water’s “Alerts” on their www.browncountywater.com.

“When we have widespread issues, we can notify them via text message or email if they are signed up,” Hawley said of the alert system.

”We also would encourage our customers to make sure the utility has their most up to date phone number because we use an automated calling system to call specified customers when the issue is more isolated, like boil advisories. We are also looking into other options to send out alerts in the future for the ones who may not have internet access. “