Rayne residents who have experienced water discoloration in recent months should soon see improvements.
The city's 60-year-old water system has been undergoing "much needed" upgrades, specifically to the facility's single clarifier, which acts as a filter to remove iron and manganese from the water and also reduces the hardness. Officials had to bypass the clarifier while it was being replaced, so the city's water currently is being treated only through chlorination. Without the clarification step, the iron remains in the water, resulting in the discoloration some residents are currently seeing.
City Engineer Brett Bayard explained. Bayard tells KATC that despite the discoloration, the water is safe to drink. The process has been entirely permitted and monitored by the Department of Health and Human Services, he said. Though iron and manganese are naturally occurring minerals, they are causing the "aesthetic issue" in the city's water.
In March, Water & Waste Superintendent Mike Judice told KATC the project was expected to last approximately three months. Now, at the end of June, some residents are wondering when they are going to start seeing changes.
Soon, said Bayard. The new clarifier is installed, and city officials began the startup process on Tuesday. According to Bayard, the clarifier should have water running through it by this coming Tuesday, July 6, and residents should begin seeing "substantial improvements."
While the water system still has other overall upgrades to undergo, Bayard said those shouldn't have the effect this one did.
"We made this a priority to get this done as quickly as possible, but there are a few other knick-knack type things that are still going to be happening," he said.
More information on the upgrades can be found here.
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