City to flush fire hydrants during week of May 19

Fire hydrants in the city of Huntington will be flushed the week of May 19, Huntington Water Superintendent Randy Jones has announced.

The flushing process, conducted by water department crews with the assistance of the Huntington Fire Department, will begin on Sunday, May 19, at 11 p.m. and will continue through May 24 or until complete.

Jones says city residents may experience a temporary drop in water pressure and that water may appear rusty or cloudy during the flushing.

The rust and cloudiness is not harmful, he says, and will generally clear up in a few hours.

Jones says city residents may want to take these precautions while hydrants are being flushed:

• Fill a bottle with water to use for drinking or cooking and store it in the refrigerator.

• During flushing, water from the tap may be full of sediment which causes discoloration. If that happens, Jones says, run the water for several minutes until it's clear. The discoloration affects only the color and not the quality of the water, he says.

• Avoid washing laundry during the flushing. Wait until the water from the tap runs clear, then wash a load of dark clothes first. Hot water tanks can hold discolored water for some time after the cold water runs clear, Jones says.

• Homeowners may want to flush hot water tanks after the cold water clears.

• If the pressure seems low, check faucet screens for trapped particles.

Anyone who sees a flushing crew on their street is asked to avoid running tap water and using the washing machine or dishwasher until the flushing is completed.

Jones explains that fire hydrants in town are flushed twice a year to flush sediment from mainline pipes, verify proper operation of fire hydrants and valves, check for closed valves and weak flows in water mains, verify ample water flow for firefighting and improve water quality.