Watts residents concerned about brown water from DWP pipes

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The LA Department of Water and Power is trying to find out why water flowing from pipes in Watts is discolored brown and yellow. (KABC)

Water flowing out of pipes at some homes in Watts has been various shades of beige, brown or yellow in recent weeks and residents are looking for answers from the city.

Los Angeles Department of Water and Power officials said the agency is trying to figure out the source of the discoloration and said it may be rust or sediment in pipes.

They are planning to flush out the pipes in the next few weeks and report back to the City Council by June.

"There's a possibility that we are getting additional iron out of the wells and we're looking to see if that is a source that needs to be shut off and if we need to do any additional treatment there," said Marty Adams with the DWP. "But there's also a possibility the sediment could be coming from rust off of pipelines."

The DWP officials also said there was a chlorination failure at the city's 99th Street well for about six hours. The chlorination failure is unrelated to the more recent discoloration, officials said.

Still, residents are also questioning why they weren't notified until April.

The Los Angeles Unified School District has provided bottled water to students at four elementary schools in Watts because the water was discolored. It's clear now and the DWP says it's safe to drink, but at least one school is still giving out bottled water.

The Better Watts Initiative wants an independent analysis of the water quality.

"We've got a couple of doctors and scientists involved with us that we've asked to give us some guidance on how to collect this more responsibly," said Timothy Watkins with the Better Watts Initiative. "We don't want to fan any flames if there's nothing to be concerned about but we want to verify first."
Related Topics:
contaminated waterdrinking waterWattsLos AngelesLos Angeles County
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