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Report: City has perfect water

The city’s water is as perfect as it can get, according to a report from the Mississippi State Department of Health.

Brookhaven’s water scored a 5 out of 5 following a yearly inspection conducted in late July, said water supervisor Kris Xifos.

Brookhaven came close to a 5 the previous year, scoring just shy of the perfect points because of a busted aerator that went out the week before the inspection and was back in working order the following week, he said.

Ralph Augimeri with Mitchell Technical Services Inc., which manages the city’s water system, said inspector Lee Fancher awarded Brookhaven a 5 in technical, managerial and financial assessments.

“The system has made several improvements since the time of the last inspection and should be commended for their efforts,” Fancher said.

“That’s what every city is shooting for,” Augimeri said. “That means everything is 100 percent and it meets all the health department requirements.”

Brookhaven’s system includes nine wells, a water treatment plant and four elevated towers. Between 1.5 gallons to 2 million gallons of water a day is chlorinated, fluoridated and pumped throughout the city to the 12,513 customers.

“They want to make sure all of those are meeting all of the requirements for all of those operating units,” Augimeri said. “They look at every individual step. We have to have everything correct.”

A target pH for the treatment plant is 8.3 within .5 either way. The chemical analysis of the finished water at the time of the inspection was 7.8 for pH.

A target range for fluoride is 0.8 to 1.2 mg/L. At the time of the inspection, the level at Well 07 was 0.2 mg/L. Augimeri said the pump had not been working properly since the new chlorinator booster pump was installed.

The Brignall system is offline — however, the system may be used in the future if more development occurs and capacity is needed. It could also be used as a backup system.

Some of Fancher’s suggestions included flushing dead-end water lines on a routine schedule to clear the lines of sediment and stagnant water, and to notify customers in areas where system pressure is lost to boil their drinking water until clear bacteriological samples have been obtained.

Xifos said the water department already does both.

About 12,500 customers were under a state boil water advisory for seven days in January 2017 after the presence of E. coli and total coliform bacteria was found in routine samples. The state required two days of clear samples before the advisory could be lifted.