Victoria addresses water quality issues

Published 4:38 pm Wednesday, October 30, 2019

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Letters advising all Town residents of high levels of TTHM in drinking water were mailed to residents several months ago. To address the issue and reduce the chances of another such instance Victoria officials are preparing to purchase a mixer for the Town’s elevated water tank.

Town officials explained part of the problem is that at times water stands in the town’s tank and doesn’t move.

During the day, the water treatment facility produces water and fills the town’s elevated tank to its 500,000-gallon capacity, but at the end of the day the facility shuts down and all water is supplied from its storage, Town Manager Rodney Newton explained.

Typically, he said, the level of the water will drop 100,000 to 150,000 gallons overnight depending on usage. “The design of the elevated tank lends itself for stratification of the water inside the tank,” he said. “The mixer will minimize the stratification of the water in the tank.”

The mixer and installation of electrical circuitry to ground level will cost around $15,000, Newton said.

“I do not have an estimate on the electrical work as it will also involve some electrical upgrades at the elevated water tank,” Newton said. “We do not have a timetable for the project as of yet.”

The project will not lead to a rate increase because it will be funded with budgeted funds, Newton said.

Southern Corrosion will install the mixer and we will have an electrician supply service to it, the Victoria Town Council’s October minutes note. The project also gives the Town an opportunity to put in a work order with Dominion Virginia Power to upgrade the electrical connection at the ground, the minutes said.

“TTHM” is “total trihalomethanes,” a group of chemical compounds that form during drinking water treatment. The compounds are produced when organic matter in natural water reacts chemically with chlorine disinfectants, and are just one type of a larger family of chemicals known as Disinfection Byproducts, noted the Water Quality and Health Council website.

The council’s website identifies itself as an independent, multidisciplinary group sponsored by the Chlorine Chemistry Division of the American Chemistry Council, an industry trade association. Made up of scientific experts, health professionals, and consumer advocates, the group’s mission is to promote science-based practices and policies to enhance water quality and health by advising industry, health professionals, policymakers, and the public.

Chlorine disinfectants are added to drinking water to destroy the microbial pathogens that could make consumers sick or even kill them, the website noted.