Dirty water, ‘disgusting’ to some, prompts warning not to drink from the tap | ParkRecord.com

Dirty water, ‘disgusting’ to some, prompts warning not to drink from the tap

by Jay Hamburger OF THE RECORD STAFF

City Hall on Monday issued an advisory requesting people who live in neighborhoods along a stretch of the S.R. 224 entryway not drink tap water or use it for cooking, a measure that officials deemed precautionary as they attempted to determine what caused the water to become dirty over the weekend.

The areas under the advisory as of late Tuesday morning were:

The west side of S.R. 224 between the McPolin Farm and Park City Mountain Resort

The east side of S.R. 224 between the Holiday Ranch Loop Road intersection and the Park Avenue police station.

A City Hall-published map shows the areas under the advisory stretch well into the Thaynes Canyon neighborhood, with streets including Thaynes Canyon Drive, Three Kings Drive and Payday Drive within the advisory zone.

"Folks are doing great. Folks obviously have some questions," Phyllis Robinson, a City Hall spokesperson, said on Tuesday morning.

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Robinson said City Hall expected to expand the area under the advisory late on Tuesday to include five streets in the Iron Canyon neighborhood. Someone reported the dirty water at their place in the neighborhood, she said.

Officials had not determined a cause, though, by midday Tuesday, and Robinson said water samples had been sent to an independent laboratory in the Salt Lake Valley. The first results, which will determine whether bacteria might have caused the dirty water, were expected late on Tuesday. Robinson said officials "really can’t speculate at this point."

People reported water with a rusty hue was flowing from faucets in their homes, Robinson said. The water’s coloring had started to clear up by Tuesday morning, Robinson said.

Public Works Department crews had been trying to clean the water lines early in the workweek by running fast-moving water through them, a process known as flushing. The fast-moving water is meant to pick up and carry contaminants out of the lines. The crews were seen on Three Kings Drive Tuesday morning.

City Hall on Monday provided one-gallon jugs of water to people and businesses in the areas under the advisory, setting up a distribution center at the fire station on Holiday Ranch Loop Road. Robinson said more than 2,300 of the water jugs were handed out by Tuesday morning, with large quantities provided to two hotels — the Marriott Mountainside and the Park City Peaks Hotel. The fire station still had a supply of the water jugs to distribute as of midmorning Tuesday.

Kate Arvin, who lives on Aspen Springs Drive, in the area under the advisory, said the water at her house turned discolored Saturday evening. Arvin said she had been buying water before City Hall provided the water jugs.

"I wouldn’t even shower in it. It is disgusting," Arvin said on Monday as she collected water jugs at the fire station.

Arvin said the tap water at her house was "brown, and it has a greasy film on it."

Tom Hurd, who lives on Silver Queen Court, another street under the advisory, said the water at his house turned brown on Saturday. He picked up eight gallons of water at the fire station on Monday.

"I figured it was just the city flushing the lines . . . Apparently it’s something else," Hurd said.

The Park City Police Department fielded a series of complaints about discolored water starting Sunday morning, with calls coming from people on Windrift Lane, Nail Drive Court and Saddle View Way. The callers in each case told dispatchers the water was either brown or rusty colored, according to public police logs. The police received at least four calls.

City Hall has posted information about the advisory online, http://www.parkcitywater.org. A water hotline has been set up with information as well, 615-5320.

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