by Anayeli Ruiz
KERMIT – It’s freaking some people out in Kermit. Dark and dirty water pouring out of their faucets. It looks so nasty people are afraid to use it. Some of our viewers wanted to know what was going on. So we decided to track down the problem. As NewsWest 9 found out, the city says it’s not only normal, it’s clean.
“Dirty water. If I’m drinking that water, I don’t know what I’m drinking,” Resident, Rita Dominguez, said.
Fear is what many residents in Kermit are experiencing when they turn on their faucet. They are scared of what will come out.
“My neighbor across the way came over one morning asked me if my water was brown. When she draws out bath water or it comes out of the toilet, it’ brown and really dirty,” Resident, Anita Gloege, said.
City officials say the water is safe and clean, even though it may look dirty, it isn’t.
“Sure the water is aesthetically pleasing to look at, there is no health issues,” John Shepherd, Director of Public Works, said.
Believe it or not, the City of Kermit doesn’t have a filtration system. They only use chlorine to flush out the chemicals.
The water they have been getting lately has high levels of manganese and iron and when those are mixed with chlorine and it comes out as brown pigmented water.
“We have got iron and manganese in our water. We have always had it, it’s a common element for this area. You can’t see it until the chlorine hits the water to disinfect it. As soon as we disinfect it, they show up and precipitate and become visible,” Shepherd said.
Officials say the more water that you use, the more likely you’ll be to see the dirty looking water.
“Where the demand goes, usually more affluent neighborhoods, you pull harder on systems and pull that dirty water towards them,” Shepherd said.
The city normally flushes their systems once in April and once in October. This is to help clean and get rid of all the elements. In the meantime, residents will have to wait it out a little longer before they get the pipes flushed out.
“If I flush now, I will be flushing it again. Economics and the demand on the water system, I will be doing it again in 30 days. We’re still in a high demand, we have about 30 more days,” Shepherd said.
Some residents are not happy with the wait.
“It’s not normal. We pay for the water, they need to do something about it,” Dominguez said.
City officials say if you get dirty water, let it run for 15-20 minutes. If you continue to see the dirty water, call the city in Kermit.