Pasadena working on THM levels in drinking water

Paul Hutchings
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Drinking water coming from Pasadena water taps received a passing grade according to a provincial report.

Results of the 2013 Summer Drinking Water quality report were released by the Department of the Environment to town officials who discussed it briefly at the town’s public council meeting last Monday. The report shows the water contains a higher than usual level of THMs, which are disinfection byproducts that form when chlorine is added to water that contains high levels of organic matter, such as leaves.

Town manager Brian Hudson said residents have nothing to fear, as these kinds of levels are not unusual this time of year.

“There is nothing alarming in the report, generally during spring runoff and other times of higher concentration, levels will go up,” he said. “We are working on getting those THM levels down.”

He said the town drains its water tanks each year and lines are flushed out on a regular basis. Hydrant lines are also maintained.

In a similar water report from last year, the Town of Deer Lake discovered the same issues and managed, according to staff, to solve them. Drinking water reports are completed every year for towns across the province.

Geographic location: Pasadena

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Recent comments

  • Julian Dust
    March 24, 2014 - 09:57

    I doubt if the problem is caused by leaves in the drinking water source---or at least not directly. THMs including trichloromethane arise from reaction of hypochlorite and hypochlorous acid with dissolved organic matter (DOM). DOM is amorphous organic material that, indeed, is formed from the natural breakdown of animal and plant material including leaves, and is usually found in high levels in surface water used as the source for drinking water. DOM levels are usually lower for groundwater (well water), but surface levels can be reduced through thorough filtration prior to chlorination.