GAWSA Annual Distribution System Flushing Program / Water Main Break Repair Protocol
Every spring/early summer, Douglas County Fire District 2 conducts its hydrant flushing maintenance. In conjunction, GAWSA will be flushing main lines throughout the Authority. GAWSA turns valves and flushes different areas of the main water lines to further eliminate sediment and deposits in the water, and reduce water stagnation. Flushing should take between two to four weeks.
Enhancing Water Quality
An important part of delivering quality water involves occasionally flushing the pipes in the distribution system. DC Fire District 2 staff opens fire hydrants around the Authority at scheduled intervals to allow the water to flow through the pipes. This enhances water quality by flushing sediment from the pipes, verifies proper hydrant and valve operation, and helps maintain firefighting capabilities.
What Should I Do When the Hydrants Are Being Flushed, or If There Was A Water Main Repair, In My Area?
If you see a crew flushing a hydrant or working to repair a water main break, avoid running tap water and using the washing machine or the dishwasher until the flushing is done. If you see hydrant flushing crews working in the area, please drive carefully and treat them like any other road construction crew.
What Should I Do After Flushing?
- If tap water is used during flushing, it could come out full of sediment that causes discoloration. If you encounter discolored water, shut the water off and wait several minutes. After waiting, check the clarity by running cold water through your bath faucet for a few minutes, allowing new water to work its way into your pipes. If the water is clear, it's OK to use. If not, wait a few more minutes and check again. In some cases, there may be slight discoloration for a few hours. This discoloration only affects the appearance of the water, it does not affect water quality. There is no health hazard associated with discolored water.
- Avoid washing laundry during scheduled flushing times. Wait until the water runs clear at the tap, then wash a load of dark clothes first.
- If pressure or volume seems low, check your faucet screens for trapped particles.
Why Does My Water Look Funny After Flushing?
When a hydrant is opened, there may be temporary incidences of discolored water while fine sediment particles are flushed out. There is no health hazard associated with the discolored water. Allow a few hours for discoloration to dissipate. To verify water is clear, run your cold-water tap for a few minutes.
The link below further explains the importance of hydrant flushing.