The annual, routine change is necessary to maintain the regional system and year round water quality.
Disinfection is a critical part of the water treatment process that keeps drinking water free of harmful microorganisms, such as parasites and viruses. Disinfection involves a two-step process that first treats the water at the treatment plant and then chloramine disinfectant (chlorine + ammonia) is added to maintain water quality on its journey through the miles of pipes to homes and businesses. During the temporary change, NTMWD suspends adding ammonia and uses only free chlorine to keep water disinfected as it travels through pipes. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, this temporary conversion is a common practice for as many as 40 percent of water providers using chloramines for disinfection.
“NTMWD has conducted this routine, temporary change in water disinfectant annually for over 10 years, and we have always met safe drinking water standards,” said Zeke Campbell, NTMWD Water System Manager. “This common system maintenance practice does not increase the amount of chlorine, and the water remains safe to drink.”