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Chlorine Spike for some in NW, Don’t Drink the Water!

by Prince Of Petworth April 20, 2010 at 9:48 am 22 Comments


Photo by PoPville flickr user J Y W

From a WASA email:

The District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (DC WASA) is advising customers in a specific area of Northwest not to use water until further notice because of a higher-than-normal chlorine concentration.

The boundaries of the area in question are indicated below.

West Boundary: MacArthur Boulevard, NW

North Boundary: Western Avenue and Eastern Avenue, NW

East Boundary: Amtrak railroad

South Boundary (east side of Rock Creek): Upshur Street, NW

South Boundary (west side of Rock Creek): Calvert Street to Observatory Circle to W Street

The spike happened early this morning at DC WASA’s unmanned Fort Reno facility when it was offline for routine maintenance disinfection. At 7:30 this morning, operators at the DC WASA Bryant Street Pump Station identified a drop in the reservoir at Fort Reno, which indicated the possibility of a chlorine spike. DC WASA immediately dispatched staff to confirm a higher-than-normal chlorine concentration in the water, which they determined had happened at approximately 5 a.m.

Customers who used water with excess chlorine may have noticed taste and odor problems. While unlikely, the chlorine may also cause a reaction in individuals with sensitive skin. Anyone who observes such a reaction should contact a physician.

DC WASA notified the United States Environmental Protection Agency Region III immediately upon learning of the chlorine spike. Water-quality crews are monitoring the system across the entire affected area and will advise the public when the water supply has returned to normal. Our staff is also assessing the causes of the problem.

Customers with questions should call the DC WASA 24-hour Emergency Center at 202-612-3400.

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