Residents asked to conserve water as Jackson suffers setback at Curtis plant

FILE - This aerial view shows the city of Jackson's O.B. Curtis Water Plant in Ridgeland,...
FILE - This aerial view shows the city of Jackson's O.B. Curtis Water Plant in Ridgeland, Miss., Sept. 1, 2022. A cold snap blanketing the Deep South has upended water systems as local officials struggle to repair widespread leaks and broken pipes, forcing some people to take drastic measures to get by without reliable access to running water. Officials have encouraged people across the South to drip faucets during the prolonged cold snap because water moving through pipes is less likely to freeze. (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)(Steve Helber | AP)
Published: Jan. 1, 2023 at 1:41 PM CST
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Customers can expect pressure fluctuation through the next 24 hours as the city of Jackson’s water system has experienced a setback at the O.B. Curtis Water Treatment Plant Saturday night.

Crews spent New Year’s Day working to get back on track.

“The water system was showing signs of recovery and had reached 80 PSI by the end of the day Saturday,” Interim Third-Party Manager Ted Henifin said in an email on Sunday. “The elevated tanks had started to fill for the first time since Christmas.”

However, he said “overnight process challenges” at Curtis, Jackson’s main treatment plant, stalled that process.

“As a result, the distribution system lost pressure and most of the gains reported,” he said. “Many customers who had water restored [on Saturday] have lost pressure again.”

Curtis is Jackson’s main water treatment facility, serving approximately 43,000 connections across the city, in Byram, and parts of Hinds County.

Problems occurred on the plant’s conventional treatment side. Details of the setback were under investigation. “It’s now running again,” Henifin said. “We don’t know what happened. We’re trying to figure it out.”

Areas impacted primarily include west, central, and south Jackson, as well as elevated areas in the capital city.

“Staff at O.B. Curtis are working diligently to fully recover the process and expect to make gains again late today,” Henifin wrote. “The current goal is to restore system pressure fully by Monday evening into early Tuesday morning.”

Pressure needs to be above 80 PSI, or pounds per square inch, to ensure all customers in the city have water. Pressure needs to be around 20 PSI at each connection before officials can begin testing to have boil water notices lifted.

As Jackson continues recovery efforts, the precautionary boil notice remains in place for much of the city, with the exception of those homes and businesses in the 39211 zip code.

“All customers with water are encouraged to conserve as much as possible to speed the recovery to those without water,” Henifin wrote.

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