In response to an increased number of reports of discolored and cloudy water, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) began flushing pipes in the Watts and Green Meadows communities to remove sediment from pipes on May 11. The Watts area flushing program is expected to remove sediment from the area’s City-owned pipe system and prevent water cloudiness from persisting.
During these operations, customers’ water service will not be interrupted, but there may be less water pressure. The flow of water to homes and businesses will be redirected so that pipes can be isolated for flushing. During this time, customers’ water may be murky or appear dirty for a few hours. This is a temporary condition and not a health risk.
When the flushing work is done in an area, customers should run their taps for a couple of minutes until the water is clear. Even though we try to avoid wasting water, it is necessary to run the taps for a very short time to clear out the remaining cloudy and discolored water that develops as part of the pipe flushing process. 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 is additional information on the steps LADWP is taking to improve water quality in this area of the city.
- As of today, 139,000 feet or more than 26 miles of pipe in the area have been flushed by LADWP crews. Work is expected to continue until early June. Before flushing, LADWP crews post signage and door hangers to notify the community of the operation.
- In an effort to be fully transparent, LADWP will post on its water quality website www.ladwp.com/waterquality all test results of LADWP water provided to customers as well as a map outlining where flushing has occurred.
- In addition to distributing door hangers in areas where crews are flushing pipes, LADWP will be sending an email to customers in the area explaining the flushing process. Staff will also be walking neighborhoods to alert larger customers like churches and businesses who may not see a door hanger.
- On May 16, LADWP shut down the 99th Street Well Treatment Facility to conduct a full cleaning and flushing of the onsite treatment system, which treats water from wells in the surrounding area for distribution to LADWP customers. During the approximately two-week period when the treatment facility is undergoing flushing, area residents will receive water from other sources within LADWP’s distribution system, which includes source water from the Metropolitan Water District/State Water Project and the Easter Sierra Watershed through the LA Aqueduct.
- LADWP increased the frequency of water testing in the Watts/Green Meadows area from weekly to daily on May 11 as reported last week. Water quality staff members have collected daily samples and tested for bacteria, color, turbidity and metals. To date, all water tested has met state and federal drinking water standards however; any water provided to customers that is discolored is a concern to LADWP and is the reason for the flushing operation it is undertaking.
- LADWP has tested the water at six area schools. All tests indicate that the water meets health and safety standards. To further prevent cloudy water at area schools, LADWP will only flush pipes near schools on weekends where possible.
- LADWP Water Quality Hotline staff has received 10 discolored water complaints from the Watts/Green Meadows area since flushing operations began on May 11.
LADWP takes water quality very seriously, and the safety and reliability of water remains our highest priority. The water quality in this area and in every area of the City is consistently monitored and treated 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 a knocked over fire hydrants, which disturb natural sediment that builds up over time. Even though this water is safe to drink, discolored or cloudy water in our pipe system is unacceptable and we are taking 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.
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