Update from the DPS Water Division

Water image

Please find below a message from Wayne Amaral, Director of Public Services.

As many of you are aware, the City of Newburyport Water Division has had a challenging year managing our water quality. At no time was our water supply unhealthy. Our drinking water is safe and well within all state and federal regulations. Nevertheless, we understand everyone’s frustration relating to the appearance of our water.

First of all, I would like to explain what happened over the summer that caused discoloration in our drinking water. This was a result of historical high levels of manganese in our supply. These levels are not a local problem, but occurring in our region in general. 

Manganese is a naturally occurring mineral in the Newburyport surface water. It is present in the environment from weathering of natural sources like rock and soil. This was a result of excessive precipitation and runoff we have and continue to experience. We continue to test and treat the Manganese when needed to safe levels for human consumption. Residents might encounter discolored water at certain times while there are increases traces of Manganese. We have experience reduced levels of manganese over the past few weeks and hope that they will go back to normal levels soon.

Recently, we started flushing our system as we during routinely, usually twice a year. This preventative maintenance is a must to maintain a healthy water system. We must flush our system routinely to reduce the buildup of sedimentation in our water lines. Our reservoirs also have some shallow areas that need to be cycled to maintain fresh water circulation.

The DPS Water Division is fortunate to have a staff of dedicated personal whose main goal is to supply clean water 24/7, 365 days a year. We also have consultants who are available to offer supplemental support when requested to address and guide us relating to the issue and program noted above.

Please subscribe to the DPS news, announcement and urgent alert updates notification portal so you can get the most up to date status on this topic and other important messages that may be some interest to you.  You can also subscribe through WaterSmart to get up to date messages.         

If you have any questions, please contact the City of Newburyport, Department of Public Services Water Division at 978-464-4420.