Three communities wait for clear running water - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Three communities wait for clear running water

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Families in Woodbridge, Ansonia and Derby are concerned after seeing discolored water coming out of the faucet. (WFSB) Families in Woodbridge, Ansonia and Derby are concerned after seeing discolored water coming out of the faucet. (WFSB)
ANSONIA, CT (WFSB) -

People who live in parts of Ansonia, Derby and Woodbridge have been pretty concerned about brown water coming out of their faucets. 

It all started Wednesday morning on Pershing Drive in Derby. A water main broke beneath a pile of dirt which dislodged sediment and discolored water in parts of three different towns.

"We do need clean drinking water. I don't want my children to bathe in that kind of water," Haneefah Burrell, a mother of five in Ansonia said.

The water in the faucets in her North Main Street apartment may look clear at a distance, but when you see it in cups compared to bottled water, you can tell it has sediment in it.

Burrell is not alone. Several Eyewitness News viewers sent pictures of the brown water in sinks and toilets and video of it running through their faucets.

"It's primarily manganese and iron oxide rust as a result of the cast iron water mains the are used to convey the water," said Tom Barger of the South Central Connecticut Region Water Authority.

He insisted the water is safe. "There's not any danger in this. It's more of an aesthetic condition. We would not necessarily say to people, 'go ahead and drink that'. If you have an alternative option available, we certainly would not argue people out of that option."

With the water main fixed, crews are now flushing the lines, but in the meantime there are some recommended precautions.

Experts recommend not washing light colored clothing because it can stain whites and can also stain porcelain plates and other types of dishware.

Do not use hot water, it can pull sediment into your hot water tank.

If possible, drink bottled water. Water manganese and iron can be harmful to people with immune systems.

"If you have a baby whose taking formula and it needs to be diluted with water, you don't have sterile water, spring water. You have to give that to a small child. I think it's unacceptable," said Burrell.

Crews were out through Thursday night and into Friday morning to flush the lines so that all homes would have clear running water as soon as possible.

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