Hydrant flushing is the quick release of water from fire hydrants.
It is a controlled procedure that is vital to the general maintenance of the water distribution system. Flushing ensures adequate water flow is available to residents, businesses, and fire fighters. It also improves water quality by clearing iron and other mineral deposits from the water mains.
While it may seem like a waste of good clean water, flushing of hydrants is essential to keeping your water safe and maintain the integrity of a pipe network. Hydrant flushing helps ensure water quality and helps avoid random bouts of discolored water if there is a high demand for water, caused by a major firefighting effort or water main break. During the flushing of a hydrant, some customers may notice reduced water pressure and flow.
Sometimes hydrant flushing can make the water temporarily appear rust- colored because the iron and other mineral deposits in the water mains get stirred up. There is no health hazard associated with discolored water.
Water is safe to use and consume during hydrant flushing, however it may stain laundry.
Wait until flushing has subsided in your area then run a cold water tap until the water runs clear.
If the water inside a home or business is turned on while hydrant flushing is going on, discolored water may enter your plumbing. If a neighbor did not use water during flushing hours, they most likely will not notice any discoloration
Sometimes residents who live beyond the limits of the area where hydrant flushing is currently being performed, may notice rust-colored water. This can occur because the opening of a hydrant can cause water run in the opposite direction than normal, SBA personnel use techniques intended to minimize these impacts