TCEQ meets with WCID, Bell County cities for water system review

Local
January 01 2022 12:00 am

KILLEEN, Texas – The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) visited the Killeen area Friday to review water issues presented by the Bell County Water Control and Improvement District (WCID) and to advise on the next steps to be taken.

The City of Killeen issued a city-wide boil water notice on October 19, which found chlorine residuals below TCEQ guidelines in samples taken from six of nine sites.

TCEQ brought a four-person team to meet with WCID on Friday morning – as well as the cities of Copperas Cove, Harker Heights and Killeen. WCID provides wholesale water service to the cities of Belton, Copperas Cove, Killeen, Harker Heights, Nolanville and the Fort Hood Military Reservation.

On Thursday, WCID began temporarily converting the disinfectant in its water treatment process from chloramines to free chlorine – and this conversion will continue through November 21. During this time, customers in all areas may experience taste and odor changes associated with temporary disinfectant conversion.

WCID is partnering with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) and local entities to implement a temporary disinfectant conversion to free chlorine to maintain the system and water quality.

Once the free chlorine in the water coming from WCID #1’s treatment plants reaches the cities’ take points, crews will begin flushing the system in order to pull the free chlorine water to the end of the system. The free chlorine water is projected to reach Killeen’s take points by the end of Friday. 

As the water is pulled through the system, the free chlorine levels will be tested to track its progress and let the water crew know when the sampling to lift the boil water notice (BWN) can begin. Once these samples are sent to the lab, the 24-hour testing begins. 

Per state law, the BWN notice cannot be lifted until the lab finds the samples acceptable. Flushing and testing will throughout the weekend – and with the TCEQ’s guidance, is hopeful to provide a better timeline on Monday.

Water crews were flushing a fire hydrant on Clear Creek Road at the Airport Elevated Storage Tank site on Friday morning, which is a one-million-gallon tank providing storage and pressure for the Airport Pressure Plane. You can see the video below.

You can view an interview with City of Killeen Director of Public Works Jeffery Reynolds below, which followed the meeting with TCEQ.

The City of Killeen is offering bottled water for those who do not have the ability to boil their own water. You can contact the city at (254) 501-6315 for assistance. There were eight requests on Thursday, October 21.

Source: City of Killeen

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