LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) has completed flushing pipes in the Watts and Green Meadows neighborhoods to clear sediment and prevent cloudy water. A total of 265,500 feet, or over 50 miles of pipe have been flushed by LADWP crews in the area ranging from Alameda Street to Central and 92nd Street to Imperial Highway.
LADWP began flushing pipes on May 11 in response to an increased number of reports of discolored and cloudy water in the Watts and Green Meadows communities. The operation concluded on June 11. All told, approximately 30,000 customers’ LADWP water main pipes supplying their homes and businesses have been flushed.
The 99th Street Well Treatment Facility was also shut off for cleaning during this flushing operation to further improve water quality in the area. While the 99th Street Well Treatment Facility is undergoing cleaning, area residents are receiving water from other sources within LADWP’s distribution system, including water from the Metropolitan Water District/State Water Project and the Eastern Sierra Watershed through the LA Aqueduct.
The flushing program should improve the quality and reliability of water we provide to customers’ homes and businesses. However, it will not correct private plumbing or corrosion problems.
Following are additional steps LADWP is taking to improve water quality in this area of the city and to keep customers informed of the ongoing flushing process and increased water quality testing:
- LADWP posted updates, results of water quality tests, and a map of the flushing location at www.ladwp.com/waterquality.
- In addition to distributing door hangers and posting signage in areas where crews flushed pipes, LADWP sent an email to customers in the area explaining the flushing process. Staff also walked neighborhoods to alert larger customers, such as churches and businesses, who may not have seen door hangers.
- LADWP increased the frequency of water testing in the Watts/Green Meadows area from weekly to daily on May 11. Water quality staff collects daily samples and tests for bacteria, color, turbidity and metals. To date, all test results of water supplied to customers has met state and federal drinking water standards. However, any water provided to customers that is discolored or cloudy is a concern to LADWP and is the reason for the flushing operation.
- During this flushing operation LADWP tested the water at nine area schools. All tests indicate that the water meets health and safety standards. LADWP made every attempt to flush during non-school hours to prevent cloudy water on campuses.
- To date, LADWP Water Quality Hotline staff has received 40 discolored water complaints from the Watts/Green Meadows area since flushing operations began on May 11. Each call has since been followed up on and all but two customers report the water turbidity has since improved. Water Quality staff will continue to follow up with these customers.
- A letter was mailed to over 20,000 customers outlining the completion and extent of the flushing operation on June 10.
LADWP takes water quality very seriously, and the safety and reliability of water remains our highest priority. LADWP conducts an average of 30,000 water samples throughout the city and performs over 150,000 water quality tests for compliance, research and operational improvements each year to deliver the highest quality tap water possible.
When discoloration occurs it is often an indication of aged residential or private property plumbing. It can also be caused by excessively high water flows, such as occurs during a major fire or as a result of knocked over fire hydrants, which disturb natural sediment that builds up in pipes over time. Even though this water is safe to drink, discolored or cloudy water in our pipe system is unacceptable and we have and will take action to correct it.
If you experience cloudy water, please contact our Water Quality Hotline at 213-367-3182 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Staff will come out to inspect the water and flush pipes if necessary. LADWP relies on and appreciates the public letting us know of discolored water as it assists us in our ability to provide the highest quality water to customers.