Service Authority Annual Water System Flushing Gets Underway in April

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Provided by Prince William County Service Authority

The Prince William County Service Authority will conduct its annual spring flushing of the water distribution system beginning Monday, April 3, through mid-June.

Each spring, the Service Authority’s drinking water providers, Fairfax Water and the City of Manassas, temporarily change the primary disinfectant in their water treatment process from chloramines to free chlorine. The water providers indicate that this temporary change facilitates an effective flushing program for the distribution system and is a drinking water industry best practice.

“Our system-wide flushing is a standard routine maintenance process recommended by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Virginia Department of Health to properly maintain high water quality within distribution systems,” said Jonathan Okafor, Collection & Distribution Manager, Service Authority.

The flushing process forcefully draws the chlorinated water through the distribution system, washing out any sediment and minerals that may have collected in the water mains. It also provides an opportunity for the Service Authority to test fire hydrants connected to the system, ensuring that they are well-maintained and fully functional.

During the system flushing period customers might notice the following:

  • Service Authority personnel and trucks performing hydrant flushing activities in their neighborhoods.
  • A slight chlorine smell in their tap water. We suggest that customers refrigerate tap water or use water filters to reduce chlorine odor.
  • Brief periods of cloudiness in their tap water. The Service Authority recommends running the cold-water tap for approximately two minutes to reduce cloudiness.

View Frequently Asked Questions about the System Flushing Program here.

The Service Authority will also provide timely updates about its system flushing program on Facebook and Twitter. These updates will specify the areas of the County where crews will be flushing water through hydrants during specific date ranges.

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