Sep 14, 2021

New Jersey American Water Responds to Tropical Depression Ida

Before the Tropical Depression approached the state, the utility set readiness efforts in place.


After Tropical Depression Ida, New Jersey American Water updated customers that all its operating areas are withstanding widespread flooding and that drinking water quality has not been impacted.

According to New Jersey American Water, it implemented storm protection plans at its water treatment facilities to prepare for such disasters. Amongst these protections includes the Raritan-Millstone Water Treatment Plant in central New Jersey, which underwent a $37 million flood protection investment project in 2018. 

“Our dedicated teams of professionals executed our emergency response plans over the past few days and overnight, and thanks to sound preparation and the investments we made into the sustainability and resiliency of our plants, pumps and other infrastructure, I am pleased to say our facilities have been able to withstand this historic flood so far and we continue to provide our customers with safe, reliable service,” said Tom Shroba, vice president of operations in a New Jersey American Water press release. 

Due to the inability to receive chemical deliveries during the flooding, New Jersey American Water temporarily changed the water treatment process from a chloramine (combined) residual to free chlorine residual at the company’s Raritan-Millstone and Canal Road Water Treatment plants, according to the utility. 

As a result, some customers may temporarily notice a slight taste and smell of chlorine in their water, reported the utility. Those who want to reduce the taste of chlorine can place water in an uncovered glass container in the refrigerator overnight. 

The temporary treatment change applies to New Jersey American Water customers in communities that can be read here.

Before the Tropical Depression approached the state, the utility set readiness efforts in place, which according to the utility's press release, include: operations personnel tested and fueled generators, vehicles and fuel storage tanks; secured additional water treatment chemicals; staged sandbags at treatment plant intakes; prepared wastewater treatment plants for increased flows; reviewed plans for monitoring water levels outside our treatment facilities; and updated staffing plans to help with response efforts. 

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