'Bleachy tang' to Burnham's tap water is no cause for worry, says
residents have this week been assured by Bristol Water that the
town's tap water is safe despite concerns about a 'bleachy tang'
being noticed in recent days.
company responded after several concerns were raised on Burnham-On-Sea.com's
Alison Jennings told Burnham-On-Sea.com on Friday: "Burnham
is supplied by our Treatment Works at Cheddar. Good quality water
from local springs is collected at Cheddar Gorge and in turn is
pumped to Cheddar raw water storage reservoir."
is added as a gas at a fixed dose during the final stages of treatment
to maintain excellent bacteriological purity as the water moves
through the network. Whilst the water is in transit the chlorine
gas will gradually escape from the water and the level of chlorine
present will reduce. We need to add sufficient chlorine so that
customers at the furthest ends of the network receive approximately
0.1mg/l at their tap."
added: "If you find the taste of chlorine unpalatable you
could try filling a bottle of water and leave it in the fridge
overnight to allow the gas to escape."
we get burst mains on the system which require quick repair to
ensure customers are kept in water. If we replace a section of
pipe it will need to be disinfected using chlorine before it is
used to carry water. Some customers may notice a slightly increased
level of chlorine after a repair, but given the high dilution
factor in the network a customer would need to be relatively close
to the repair to notice the elevated level."
you notice a burnt plastic/metallic/medicinal type taste to the
water this is normally a consequence of the chlorine reacting
with plastic and rubber pipe work and fittings within your property."
is more likely to occur in winter as there is more chlorine around
due to the cold water temperature holding the gas in the water
for longer. Taste issues are usually associated with the formation
of tri-chlorinated phenols (TCP, like the antiseptic ointment)
and although can taste very unpleasant are harmless at the level
found in domestic plumbing systems."
taste is more profound when the water is boiled and can ruin a
cup of tea. Hoses which connect washing machines and dishwashers
to the cold water supply are quite often the main cause. Water
can sit in the hose and react with the rubber producing these
compounds. When the tap is turned on some of this water can syphon
back from the hose and comes out of the tap."
prevent this from happening we recommend you fit a non-return
valve at the point where the hose joins the copper pipe work under
your sink. Some other culprits include plastic kettles, rubber
tap washers and flexible pipe work used to connect taps onto copper
added: "We add between 0.65 and 0.95mg/l at the outlet of
Cheddar Treatment Works. The amount of chlorine in the water may
fluctuate when out in the network depending on water temperature
- if the water is cold, like now, the gas is held in the water
for longer and will be more noticeable; and also demand for water
- in times of high demand, particularly morning and/or afternoon,
the water is moving through the network quicker and the gas will
have less chance to escape before it reaches you."
monitor the chlorine level and other water quality parameters
at Cheddar Treatment Works using very sophisticated analytical
instruments and should the level of chlorine vary beyond specific
limits that we set the Treatment Works will shutdown to prevent
out of specification water entering the distribution system."
"The water from Cheddar Treatment Works is pumped to Brent
Knoll Service Reservoir where we also have a booster chlorination
pump set. We have the facility to add additional chlorine to ensure
the residual is maintained in the network and again this is controlled
to ensure the chlorine level is maintained within set limits between
0.3 and 0.7 mg/l. Please be assured that we are always looking
to optimise the level of chlorine in your drinking water and you
will notice some seasonal variations."