Dark tap water in Westlake

By Evan Johnson - bio | email

WESTLAKE, LA (KPLC) - When Christine Earley turned on the water in her bathroom sink, she noticed it was a light brownish color.  She then ran some bath water, but what she saw drowned her in fear.

Earley says, "I was about to get in the tub and when I looked down into the tub and said, 'I'm not getting into that water.  That's nasty.'  It was as black as black can be.  I don't know what it is, but to me it looked like muddy water and it had a little smell to it too."

The dirty water left a black film in the bathtub after Christine drained the water out.  The same film appears in her toilet every time she flushes, but what's most upsetting is the dirty water can also be found in her washing machine every time she attempts to do laundry.

More than 1,600 households south of Westlake are experiencing this same problem.  Water Works District 4 says it's because they're experiencing low water pressure and the filters are overworked.

Manager Keith Hardesty says, "Since mid-May we really haven't had any rain to speak of and we're getting down to the point where our consumption is more than doubling our capacity. And over the weekend people were apparently watering their lawns too much and it got us down in critical state and we just about lost pressure."

The Water Works District is now issuing a mandatory advisory for limited water usage until further notice.  They're asking all customers not to water their lawn or add water to swimming pools.  They are, however, allowing residents to water outside plants in the early morning.  The water has been treated, but it could take some time for people like Christine Earley to see a difference in their tap's color.

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