Water suppliers say chlorine supply disruption won’t affect availability, safety

Water utilities across the region are dealing with a disruption in the supply of chlorine used to disinfect drinking water, and customers are being advised to use water wisely in light of the shortage.

According to the Washington State Department of Health, the chlorine supply disruption is the result of an electrical failure at Westlake Chemical, based in Longview, Wash. Westlake supplies chlorine to water and sewer utilities in Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Northern California. The situation is expected to be resolved within a couple of weeks, the health department said.

The cities of Edmonds, Lynnwood and Mountlake Terrace purchase their drinking water from the Alderwood Water and Wastewater District, which in turn sources its water from the City of Everett. The original water source is Spada Reservoir, located at the headwaters of the Sultan River about 30 miles east of Everett. From the Spada Reservoir, the water travels through a pipeline to the City of Everett Treatment facility at the Chaplain Reservoir.

The City of Everett says that its water remains safe to drink during the region-wide chlorine supply shortage, that it does not affect water availability. “Everett has ample water reserves,” the city says on its website.

However, customers are advised that being mindful of water use and conserving when possible can help existing supplies of chlorine last longer. Visit everettwa.gov/saveoutdoors for tips.

In a news release Tuesday, the Alderwood Water and Wastewater District (AWWD) said that Everett and AWWD “are in the advisory stage of its water usage contingency plan.” If conditions warrant, other water conservation measures in its four-step progression may be implemented.

Here is the list of stages:

▪ Advisory – informational and request public use water wisely — current stage

▪ Voluntary – Voluntary cooperation to meet set demand reduction goals 

▪ Mandatory – Utility implements limitations or restrictions on water use 

▪ Emergency – Emergency restrictions that may include surcharges 




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