Water districts get good marks in annual report

Published 8:00 pm Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Lincoln County’s water districts appear to be in good shape, according to their annual quality reports.

     The Mississippi Department of Health recently released quality ratings for all four water districts in Lincoln County and found they were all in good standing with no major problems.

     Brookhaven Water Department Superintendent Keith Lewis said the report aims to help the water districts.

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     “It’s got your basic maximum contaminant level the state allows and what we pulled throughout the year,” he said. “It gives you some direction on where your water comes from and how to save water. It’s the way we get information to the public on the quality of water in the city of Brookhaven.”

     Lewis said the tests look at each well, when it was drilled and what kind of casing it has.

     “They also make sure there are no contaminants around the wells, which there isn’t around any of ours,” he said. “If you’re anywhere near a septic tank, gas station or sewer line, that could contaminate the whole aquifer.”

     Elsewhere in Lincoln County, Mona Smith with the Lincoln Rural Water Association said things looked good for them.

     “We’ve had no major problems recently and our report came back with no significant deficiencies,” she said.

     Lincoln Rural Water serves a wide area in the northern and western parts of Lincoln County but also goes into Copiah and Lawrence counties. They serve about 14,400 customers and provide about 32 million gallons of water a month in all.

     The Topisaw Water District was also in good standing with no major problems, according to Manager Tonya Foret.

     “The report came back showing no violations,” she said.

     Foret said the Topisaw Water District serves around 4,000 people in the southeastern part of the county and has two wells in operation.

     In the southern end of the county, the Bogue Chitto Water Association had no major problems on their report, said Bogue Chitto Water Association Board President Mary Hux.

     “I’m not aware of any problems or complaints we had on our report at all,” she said.

     The Bogue Chitto Water Association provided 5,184,000 gallons of water in July from two wells and two tanks to around 700 active accounts.

     In Brookhaven, the only deficiency found in the report was inadequate internal cleaning and maintenance of a storage tank. Lewis said that is being taken care of, as bids are out to repaint the tank.

     “Any time you need a tank painted or cleaned you’ll be put on there,” said Lewis. “By the end of August, we’ll be ready to paint the outside and inside of the tank. That’s just basic upkeep on the equipment.”

     Lewis said tank inspections are taken seriously.

     “We have the tanks inspected every couple years just to make sure everything’s good as far as the health department and to make sure they’re in good shape,” he said.

     Lewis said the Brookhaven Water Department provides about 2 million gallons of water a day to around 4,100 people in Brookhaven. He said the only problems they have are minor leaks here and there with their smaller lines.

     The department does have some old water lines in use, but Lewis said he was not sure how old they were.

     “The oldest lines are still in use,” he said. “I don’t really know how old they are, but we definitely have some old ones.”