City: South Jackson homes affected by water crisis should see pressure restored by Wednesday

Published: Jan. 24, 2022 at 8:51 PM CST
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Jackson’s city engineer says dozens of residents in the southern part of the city should have water restored to their homes by Wednesday, nearly one week after the crisis began.

“We just ask for patience from our residents. We know they’re frustrated with this, especially in South Jackson, because ultimately they are impacted the most. But we’re trying to work through it,” said city engineer Charles Williams.

Williams said 88 households still have little to no water pressure, which residents first began reporting to the city Thursday morning.

The drop in water pressure stemmed from issues with the O.B. Curtis Water Treatment Plant’s filtering system, Williams told WLBT last week.

“We got so low at the plant as far as getting water out in production,” Williams said. “And we just, we just got behind. And so, a combination of that, and the operational issues at the plant, you know, it depleted our storage tanks. Now we’re just trying to rebuild the system.”

The other factor — water main breaks which began popping up as Jackson’s overnight low temperatures plunged below freezing, including a six-inch main on Claiborne Avenue.

Williams told reporters Monday at a press briefing that those breaks, though routine and anticipated this time of year, also slow down their ability to supply enough water pressure throughout the entire city, especially south Jackson, which sits at a higher elevation.

Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba said they’re also working to specifically address that area’s needs in the coming months.

“We have under construction, a water line that is increasing the size and the distribution of water to South Jackson residents to improve, to improve the flow to South Jackson,” Lumumba said.

Lumumba said that project is expected to cost around $8 million.

They’re also hoping to hire more staff, though Williams did not elaborate on the number of open positions they still have.

“We have made some strides at the plants we have,” Williams said. “We should have been an additional five operators at O.B. Curtis. So that’s going to help us improve our efficiencies and operations at the at our main water treatment facility.”

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