Ogle said in a release today (Thursday), that the city switched from groundwater to surface water in the early 1970s and has battled taste and odor problems since then. He says the typical problems come from the different types of algae found in Lake Somerville at different times of theyear and the life cycles of these algae. Sometimes, Ogle says the water tastes like ‘dirt’ to many people. The city has used many methods over the years to combat this problem and settled on chlorine dioxide in the mid 1990s as the best way to address it.
Ogle said that there was a failure in the chlorine dioxide process at Lake Somerville last week.
He says this allowed raw water to be pumped from the Lake without the full effect of the chlorine dioxide to control the taste and odor. He says the problem was repaired and they have been flushing the items throughout the distribution system to move this water out of the system.
He says the water continues to be safe to drink but it may not be as appealing as normal because of the taste and or odor.