Troy Fougerousse says “We’ll start from the beginning. Back in 2014 one of our wells was determined to be under the direct influence of surface water, we wanted to stay ground water so we’re in the process now of drilling a new well field.”
Of course until that new well field is dug the town has to have water. So the Indiana Department of Environmental Management mandated that the town’s current water had to be pretreated before it went into the treatment facility. That seems like no big deal. But Superintendent of Utilities Troy Fougerousse says that’s where the problems started.
“The consensus was that we would pretreat the raw water coming in, so again we started pretreating that water coming in, injecting chlorine in that starting February 23rd. We injected chlorine until March 23rd when we had to shut it down for the simple fact it was just causing issues with our filter.”
When the chlorine was put in the water the system couldn’t properly filter iron and manganese, causing the water to turn brown, but don’t worry it’s still safe to drink and use, if you so choose.
Troy Fougerousse says “Iron and manganese are secondary contaminants per the EPA, which means they don’t affect your health. They do affect the taste, odor, and color of the water so I understand our customers when you turn on your water and it looks like iced tea or darker your brain is saying I don’t want to drink that, and I understand that, but again, we test our water 7 days a week, 365 days a year.”
Fougerousse says it’s taken about a month and half for the water to start clearing up, so on Monday they started flushing the system in hopes of getting water back to normal.
Troy Fougerousse says “You might think nobody cares up here. We do. We’re on the water. We drink the water, we see the water, our kids, our grandkids all drink the water so we’re aware of that and again we know it’s an inconvenience to the customers, but we are on top of it and working diligently to solve it.”