LAKE STATION — The city has made progress with a comprehensive flush of its water system, but more work needs to be done.
Mayor Christopher Anderson estimated Lake Station cleared about 35 percent of the water mains in the municipality while flushing took place Monday through Thursday.
Anderson said a water main break slowed the project. He said the break, which has been repaired, occurred in an area where flushing was taking place, but it isn’t certain if the line clearing project caused it.
He said the city had to stop the comprehensive flush before all the mains were cleared because temperatures dropped below freezing, and Lake Station will continue the program when the weather is warm enough for the activity.
The flushing is needed to clear minerals that have built up in water lines. Whenever there has been a disruption in the water service, such as a water main break, it can cause those minerals to stir up and create brown and discolored water.
Removing the minerals from lines will prevent the water discoloration issues from happening again.
An interconnected line to the city’s backup water supply was repaired so Lake Station could move forward with the flush.
Anderson said Lake Station has switched over from using its treated groundwater and is now using Lake Michigan water from Indiana American Water to complete the line clearing program.
The city is expected to buy water from Indiana American for several weeks after the flush is finished, and Lake Station officials are contemplating if the municipality should continue using that supply on a long-term basis.
Anderson said that’s because repairs are needed at Lake Station’s water plant. The city is completing a cost analysis to determine if it will be more cost effective to complete the repairs now or continue buying water from Indiana American until a ruling is made on the appeal of Indiana American’s proposed acquisition of Lake Station’s water utility, Anderson said.
When the comprehensive flush resumes, residents could experience discolored water while the activity takes place. If that happens, the city advises customers to run cold water from multiple faucets until the water is clear again.
Water pressure could drop slightly, Anderson said. Lake Station’s water customers are asked to refrain from doing laundry while flushing occurs in or around their neighborhoods.
Those with questions about the comprehensive flush can call 219-850-1316.