Williamston, NC- Martin County Regional Water and Sewer Authority (MCRWASA) has become aware of taste and odor issues within our drinking water supply, which were caused by Hurricane Isaias. We apologize for this inconvenience.
An area of slow moving, stagnant water was stirred up during the recent hurricane and mixed into the Roanoke River, which feeds into MCRWASA's raw water reservoir. This stagnant water deposited organic compounds into the main water source, creating the taste and odor issues in the drinking water of the Town of Williamston and Martin County Water District #2 (in the southeastern part of Martin County, which includes Bear Grass and Farm Life areas).
"We understand a number of customers have been put off by the taste and the smell of the water in recent days. We are sorry for these issues", said MCRWASA Chairman David Bone. He added, "Please be advised the water has always been safe to drink and has met all North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) standards. Once the issue was discovered, we immediately reached out to SUEZ, our water treatment plant operations partner, and changed the treatment process to counteract the issue." SUEZ follows stringent permitting requirements and protocols to ensure any change to water treatment process is done correctly and within DEQ standards.
SUEZ made appropriate treatment process changes and on Tuesday, August 11, 2020, the water treatment plant returned to its usual quality. As a result, Martin County and the Town of Williamston have begun to flush the water distribution system, forcing out all the water within the system that has taste and odor concerns. Flushing the water distribution system will take a few days, so we ask customers to be patient as we work to refresh the water throughout the system.
"SUEZ takes water quality very seriously, as clear, clean drinking water is critical to us all, especially now under COVID-19 protocols and hurricane events. We've been working closely 
with MCRWASA, the County and the Town since this was first detected and immediately began working to remediate the issue. SUEZ is committed to providing the reliable drinking water customers expect and appreciate, and we apologize for the inconvenience this has brought the community" said Gary Stainback, regional manager for SUEZ North America.
MCRWASA's commitment to providing clean, safe drinking water remains our top priority.