Recently around Town, you may have noticed crews opening fire hydrants and letting the water run into storm drains or ditches. While it may appear that hundreds of gallons of water are going to waste, there are actually several benefits to this hydrant flushing process. Here's the story behind why we do it.
We routinely flush our water mains to remove minerals and sediment buildup and to check the operational integrity of the hydrants. This is important for the health of the water system as well as the hydrants and allows us to deliver the highest quality water possible to our residents and corporate citizens.
During the flushing of a hydrant, crews are also able to assess the water pressure and available flow rate for firefighting purposes. It is imperative that each hydrant is operating normally so that firefighters can rely on them in an emergency. This is a common practice in most cities and part of the normal maintenance process.
Here's a breakdown of what it means to you:
How will flushing affect my water?
During the process, you might experience a difference in the water pressure in your faucets as well as some discoloration in the water.
Is my water safe to drink during flushing?
Yes, your water is still safe to drink. You may notice that your water is discolored after flushing occurs in your area but it should return to normal after letting the tap run for a few seconds.
Does the Town test the water regularly?
The Town of Westlake tests the water and water system regularly to ensure it meets and exceeds all federal and state drinking water standards.
Is the testing done at various sites?
Routine samples are collected each month from various locations throughout the Town’s system, including various private residences.
How often is hydrant flushing done?
Hydrant flushing is performed two times a year – once in the spring and once in the fall, more often if necessary.