Tap water looks like ‘strong tea’, White Rock residents complain

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Mayor says water may not look palatable, but is safe to drink

So far 28 people have complained about the water discolouration, and the city’s plan is to complete their annual water main flushing to reduce what he called the visual problems.

White Rock resident Bev McLaughlin came home in mid-October from a week-long trip and drew a bath, she was not expecting her tub to fill up with dark brown water.

McLaughlin said she has continued to experience the murky water and has complained to the city.

“The water sometimes appears clear, other times it’s the colour of very strong tea,” she explained. “It’s discoloured and aesthetically, it’s very unpleasing.”

“[The water] doesn’t look very palatable, but it’s safe,” he said. “We’re trying to do the best we can to mitigate it.”

Baldwin said the brown water is a result of the city’s new water treatment strategy which uses chlorine. White Rock’s water has a lot of manganese, he explained, and the manganese reacts with the chlorine and produces the brown sediment.

New water treatment system

The city’s water supply serves 20,000 customers and was privately managed by Edmonton-based utility company EPCOR until the city took over in Oct. 2015.

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