Tonawanda News — City of Tonawanda residents may see some discoloration coming out of their faucets for a time this summer, though it will only be temporary, as the Erie County Water Authority begins its annual main flushing program on Monday.
The main flushing program is a routine, systematic flushing of all dead end mains within the ECWA’s distribution system, conducted annually in certain areas of the county, to improve water quality.
Amherst, Cheektowaga, Hamburg and Lackawanna also will be the focus of the practice this year to clear out unused sections of water mains that accumulate sediment and solids that may reduce capacity and affect the color, taste and odor of fresh water.
“With 3,510 miles of water mains throughout our extensive distribution system, the annual main flushing program helps us prevent sediment build up and cost effectively improve water quality and service delivery on behalf of our customers,” said ECWA Chairperson Francis G. Warthling.
Flushing is done by partially opening a hydrant or a blow off located near the affected area. The hydrant or blow off is kept open until all sediments have been removed.
“It’s a fairly simple procedure,” Warthling said. “We plan to complete the program without any interruptions in service and with as little inconvenience as possible for our customers.”
Main flushing will be conducted from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday through the fall, though a set schedule has yet to be released.
Customers who live in areas where the main flushing occurs may experience low pressure and discolored water.
The authority advises customers to run cold tap water at the lowest point of their homes or businesses for several minutes if discoloration occurs. Within a few minutes, the water should clear up, officials said, while water will not be adversely affected.
Customers can call the water authority at 684-0900 with questions.