The City and Borough of Juneau is set to begin a system-wide water distribution system flush that will last through the rest of the summer.
The City and Borough of Juneau’s Engineering Public Works and Utilities department announced to residents on Thursday it will begin flushing the bureau-wide water distribution system — the water that comes out of your tap — starting the week of August 1 and will be completed tentatively by September 30th.
“There shouldn’t be any effect on any homeowners or water users,” said Chad Gubala, the treatment and production manager for the CBJ Public Works and Utility Department. The process will be de-chlorinated and diffuse the water out of hydrants starting at the Cope Park pump station and then will “hopscotch” through Juneau going north to the hospital, crossing over to Douglas, then on to the Lemon Creek area, to the Mendenhall Valley, and then on out to the Tee Harbor area. People can expect to see CBJ crews working alongside roadways between the hours of 8 a.m.- 4:30 p.m.
Gubala said the line flushing is a preventative measure the Public Works and Utilities Department does every year to ensure water quality, and is something the city voluntarily does to maintain its “excellent” water source. The water is already treated to be potable by the Salmon Creek Treatment Plant beforehand, and Gubala said the line flushing is an extra step the city takes to ensure clarity.
He said no household needs to worry about its water being shut off for this procedure, and said the only thing to keep an eye out for is a slight discoloration in water that might occur when turning on a tap, though he said it would be rare.
The discoloration is safe, he said and is just a result of rust particles from the iron pipes oxidizing which results in a possible brief change in color. He said if that does occur, wait until the work crew leaves the area and then run the cold water tap until the water turns clear again.
The Public Works and Utilities department will also be conducting around 20 household water tests during August to test for lead and copper in the water, something Juneau has “never had any concerns or issues with.”
• Contact reporter Clarise Larson at email@example.com or at (651)-528-1807. Follow her on Twitter at @clariselarson.