City of Monroe Water System to Conduct Annual Quality Assurance Chlorine Burn Process

Monday, December 2, 2019 - 4:30pm

To provide the most effective disinfection process, the City of Monroe Water System is making
a temporary change in the type of disinfectant used in the water supply starting on December 2,
2019 and ending around January 24, 2020.

This will be the 6th year of us conducting this precautionary process. It is typical for water
systems that use chloramines to temporarily change to chlorine to clean water pipes and provide
a reliable disinfectant residual throughout all points in the distribution system. Free chlorine is
proven to be more effective in killing organisms within the pipes of the distribution system.

The City of Monroe Water System monitors the disinfectant residual in the distribution
system daily. This measurement tells us whether we are effectively disinfecting the water
supply. The disinfectant residual is the amount of chlorine or chloramines in the distribution
system. Chlorine and chloramines are common disinfectants used by water suppliers to kill
bacteria in drinking water; therefore, if the disinfectant residual is too low, microorganisms can
potentially grow in the distribution piping.

When is this switch scheduled?

The temporary switch from chloramines to free chlorine will occur December 2, 2019, through January 24,
2020. If a longer duration is required, then we will continue to use free chlorine as long as necessary.

What is being done?

We are going to change the distribution system disinfectant from chloramines to free chlorine. Although the
level of disinfectant will remain the same, the type of disinfectant will change. We will continue to monitor the
chlorine levels throughout the water system.

What should I do?

You do not need to boil your water or take other actions. This is not an emergency. If it had been, you would have been notified immediately.

What can I do if I notice a chlorine taste or smell?

During the temporary switch, you may notice a chlorine taste and/or odor in your drinking water. Chlorine levels will continue to meet EPA standards and are not a health risk.

  • Run the cold water tap for several minutes when water is not used for several days.
  • Collect and refrigerate cold tap water in an open pitcher. Be sure to collect water after running the cold water tap for two minutes. Within a few hours, the chlorine taste and odor will disappear.
  • Water filters can reduce chlorine taste and smell. Be sure to use a filter certified to meet National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) standards and replace the filter cartridge as recommended by the manufacturer.

Who should take special precautions during the temporary switch to Chlorine?

Customers who normally take special precautions to remove chloramines from tap water, such as dialysis centers, medical facilities and aquatic pet owners, should continue to take the same precautions during the temporary switch to chlorine. Most methods for removing chloramines from tap water are effective in removing chlorine.

Please share this information with all the other people who drink this water, especially those who may not have received this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses). You can do this by posting this notice in a public place or distributing copies by hand or mail.

For more information, please contact Sean Benton, Monroe Water System Manager at 318-329-2395.