City says leave hydrants alone
By Jefferson Weaver, The News Reporter
After a series of water leaks this weekend, Whiteville Public Works opened a number of hydrants to help equalize pressure in the city’s water system — only to find them turned off, resulting in pressure buildups and more breaks.
“We appreciate folks wanting to help out,” said Fire Marshal Hal Lowder,” but if you have a question about a hydrant running, call 911 or the city office first. Most of the time we know when one is running.”
Hydrants don’t increase individual water bills, Lowder said, since they feed off the main line. When pressure drops too much in the city’s system, it can allow sediments and contaminants to become suspended in the water. Running hydrants allow the system to blast out some of the particulate matter while pressure is balanced throughout the system. Since the city’s north water tank drained over the weekend, due to multiple leaks, officials kept hydrants running to clear the lines while the tank was refilled.
City officials were chasing more leaks Monday morning, Lowder said.
“The guys who were out all weekend really did go above and beyond,” he said. “The city is going to do everything it can to make sure everyone’s water is running like it should. We just ask that folks call if they see a hydrant open, or if they spot a leak somewhere. Please don’t turn the hydrants on or off.”