Temporary Disinfectant Conversion in the Public Water System

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Temporary Disinfectant Conversion in the Public Water System

The City of Athens public water system, (PWS) ID 1070005, has temporarily converted the disinfectant used in the distribution system from chloramine to free chlorine. The conversion began February 20, 2021 and will continue until March 19, 2021. During this period, you may experience taste and odor changes associated with this type of temporary disinfectant conversion.

Public water systems are required to disinfect their water and maintain an adequate disinfectant residual in the distribution system. Chloramine, free chlorine combined with ammonia, is widely used as a disinfectant because it persists for long periods while also limiting the formation of disinfection by-product contaminants. Prolonged use of chloramine coupled with other factors, such as warm temperatures and low water use in larger pipelines, can result in the growth and/or persistence of organic matter within the distribution system. Those conditions can hinder the ability to maintain an adequate disinfectant in the water system. A temporary conversion to free chlorine, partnered with flushing activities, helps to rid distribution pipes of this organic matter and improves the overall quality of your water.

The temporary change of disinfectant type to free chlorine was made after a loss of system pressure prevented the ammonia application system at the water treatment plant from operating. The ammonia system has since been repaired, however, for the reasons explained above, the City will continue using free chlorine for a brief time to gain the benefits of the conversion and improve overall water quality in the distribution system. An FAQ document is also posted along with this notice to provide additional information about disinfectant types. CLICK HERE

Please contact Michael Finney or Randy Williams with the City of Athens if you have questions regarding this matter. Contact information for both are as follows:

Randy Williams                                                  Michael Finney
Utility DirectorProduction Superintendent
rwilliams@athenstx.govmfinney@athenstx.gov
(903) 675-8035(903) 677-6666