Atmore makes royal flush
Published 7:51 am Wednesday, April 27, 2005
By By Lee Weyhrich
No matter the weather this weekend some roads will be wet.
That's because the Atmore Utilities Board will be flushing fire hydrants Friday night and Saturday morning.
The city has been flushing hydrants twice a year for nearly a decade.
"A long time ago we used to have complaints about discolored water and that kind of thing and we found out if we flushed out the water twice a year it alleviates that," Utilities Board Manager Tom Wolfe said.
The pipes are well over due for their twice-annual cleaning.
"During (Hurricane) Ivan we were scheduled to do it and we didn't get it done because of the debris around the hydrants and everything," Wolfe said. "In other words we only did it once last year."
According to Wolfe, when water is running normally through the lines sediment settles. Over time, a disturbance to the flow of water, such as fire department use or a leak, can cause that sediment to come through residential pipes as discolored water.
"Undesolved lime is one thing that will gather here in these pipes and it will settle there until we have a leak or the fire department stirs up the water," Wolfe said. "Twice a year we turn these fire hydrants wide open at night to prevent this from happening."
While the hydrants are running the water can be discolored.
"Even when the water is discolored it is still safe to drink," Wolfe said. "It will stain white clothes and things. The reason we put the schedule out is the day after the flushing schedule everyone needs to be careful with their wash. We may not get through until Saturday morning at 7 a.m. and some people might get up at 5:30 a.m. Saturday morning to wash their clothes or some people might like to wash their clothes at midnight. That's why we do it at night when less people will be washing their clothes."
The city will have employees out all night flushing the hydrants.
"We're going to have eight men out this weekend working at night," Wolfe said. "We don't like it, but in order to provide the best customer service we do that."
The flushing schedule is as follows.
April 29 at 10 p.m., the city will flush the system south of Nashville Avenue
April 30 at 10 p.m., the Utilities Board will be flushing the system north of Nashville Ave. and Nokomis
May 1 at 8 a.m., the Board will flush the Robinsonville system