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Well owners: inspect water clarity, integrity of well

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 26, 2011

Contact: Amanda L. Reidelbach

Phone: (540) 223-6929

Email: areidelbach@louisa.org

LOUISA, VIRGINIA – The Virginia Department of Health advises the following for private well owners concerned about their water supply in the aftermath of the August 23rd earthquake.

Well owners should inspect the structural integrity of their well and the clarity of the water coming from the well.

Discoloration, caused by sediment or minerals in the water, is not uncommon after an earthquake. Well owners who observe sediment in the water supply should use an alternate source of water until the water supply is clear. If in doubt about water quality, the water may be boiled before use, or consider using bottled water.

If well water is cloudy or muddy, the well and waterlines should be flushed until the water has cleared. Owners may also use “shock chlorination,” which is a process of disinfecting a private water supply and plumbing system by circulating a concentrated chlorine solution throughout the system.

The local health department can assist well owners with the chlorination and/or boiling procedures, also found at the following links:

If the discoloration persists, or if owners have concerns about bacterial contamination or structural integrity of the well, they should contact a licensed professional to inspect the structure, test the water and treat if necessary.

For more information about specific concerns regarding private wells, well owners should contact their local health department. In Louisa County, that number is (540) 967-3703.

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