Treatment begins to alleviate foul taste in water

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The Anderson Regional Joint Water System (ARJWS) has placed an activated carbon treatment process into service to help alleviate the seasonal taste and odor that customers have been experiencing recently. The taste and odor is associated with algal bloom in Lake Hartwell, the system’s raw water source.

According to ARJWS officials, the new treatment process introduces powdered activated carbon, or PAC, into the raw water feed to the water treatment plant. The high porosity of PAC provides an excellent location for the adsorption of total organic carbon, including geosmin and MIB which have caused the recent taste and odor in the ARJWS water.

Once adsorbed onto the PAC, it is then settled and removed from the drinking water supplies.

“Our existing treatment processes continue to produce water that meets all health standards and with the addition of the PAC treatment process there should be a significant reduction in the naturally occurring taste and odor causing compounds resulting in improved water taste,” Executive Director Scott Willett said.

The PAC system went on line Wednesday at 1:25 pm.

Anderson Regional Water will be coordinating a System-wide flushing program to help cleanse the entire water system of any residual taste and odor causing compounds.

Anderson Regional Water is calling upon its 15 member agencies to assist by coordinated increases in their flushing programs. Financial credits will be provided to the participating agencies equivalent to twice each member agencies’ storage capacity.

However, due to the recent pipe break, the flushing of the system has been postponed. Williamston Water Department Head David Rogers said the town had planned to begin flushing their system next Tuesday, but was advisted to postpone any plans until possibly August.

“We are anticipating noticeable water quality improvements this weekend for locations near the water treatment plant and System-wide within a week,” Willett said. “Anderson Regional Water remains committed to providing safe affordable water to our community. We apologize for any inconvenience.”

The carbon treatment process had nothing to do with the water line break the system experienced later Wednesday, officials said.