Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Somerset and Union Counties: Temporary Change in Water Treatment Planned

 

As part of our annual distribution system (pipeline) maintenance program, New Jersey American Water will be temporarily changing its water treatment process at the Raritan-Millstone and Canal Road surface water treatment plants from a chloramine residual (combination of ammonia and chlorine) to a free chlorine residual. The change will take place beginning February 13, 2017, and will continue through the end of March. During this period, customers may notice an increase in the taste and smell of chlorine in the water. This is normal and will only be temporary while we complete this annual system maintenance. As always, we will continue to monitor the water quality to ensure the service we deliver meets or is better than federal and state drinking water standards. Thank you for your patience while we complete this important annual maintenance program.

This notification applies to New Jersey American Water customers in the following communities (Communities with an asterisk purchase water from New Jersey American Water.):   

  • Hunterdon County: Flemington Borough*, Frenchtown Borough, Raritan Township, Readington Township, and Tewksbury Township
  • Mercer County: Hopewell Township, Lawrence Township, Princeton Borough, Princeton Junction, Princeton Township and West Windsor Township
  • Middlesex County: Cranbury Township, Dunellen Borough, Edison Township, Jamesburg Borough, Middlesex Borough, Monroe Township, North Brunswick*, Piscataway Township, Plainsboro Township, South Brunswick Township and South Plainfield Borough
  • Somerset County: Bedminster Township, Bernards Township, Bernardsville Borough, Bound Brook Borough, Branchburg Township, Bridgewater Township, Far Hills Borough, Franklin Township, Green Brook Township, Hillsborough Township, Manville Borough, Millstone Borough, Montgomery Township, North Plainfield Borough, Peapack & Gladstone Borough, Raritan Borough, Somerville Borough, South Bound Brook Borough, Warren Township and Watchung Borough
  • Union County: Berkley Heights Township, City of Rahway*, Clark Township, Cranford Township, Fanwood Borough, Garwood Borough, Hillside Township, Kenilworth Borough, Linden City, Mountainside Borough, New Providence Borough, Plainfield City, Roselle Borough, Roselle Park Borough, Scotch Plains Township, Springfield Township, Summit City, Union Township, Westfield Township and Winfield Park Township*.

When will the change take place?

The change will take place beginning February 13, 2017, and will continue through the end of March. When completed, we will transition back to chloramines. Any updates to the schedule will be posted to our website (select Alerts on the homepage).

How often do you perform this system maintenance program?

This program is performed annually.

Is this an approved method of treatment?

Yes. Both are approved methods of disinfection by the NJ Department of Environmental Protection.

Will I notice a change in my water service?

When we transition the disinfection process from chloramines to chlorine, some customers may notice an increase in the taste and smell of chlorine in the water. This will only be temporary while we complete this annual system maintenance.

Is the water safe to drink?

Yes. We perform this distribution system maintenance program every year as an added measure to further disinfect the pipelines in our distribution system. As always, we will continue to monitor the water quality to ensure that we meet all federal and state drinking water standards.

Why is the treatment change needed?

This periodic, scheduled change in disinfectant is a standard water treatment practice. We perform this distribution system maintenance program every year as an added measure to further disinfect the pipelines in our distribution system. It also allows us to perform necessary maintenance on our chemical feed systems.

What communities do these plants serve?

The Raritan-Millstone and Canal Road Surface Water Treatment plants serve our customers in the following counties: Mercer, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Morris, Somerset and Union.

Are there other ways to remove the chlorine taste or smell from my water?

To remove the taste of chlorine, follow these three helpful tips:

  • Place water in a glass container in the refrigerator overnight uncovered. This will allow the chlorine to dissipate at a faster pace.
  • Bring your water to a rolling boil for five minutes and allow the water to cool.
    This should reduce the chlorine taste and smell in the water.
  • Add a lemon slice or a few drops of lemon juice to a glass of drinking water.

If chlorine is being used to disinfect the system, why not use it full-time instead of chloramines?

New Jersey American Water treats the filtered water in the Raritan-Millstone and Canal Road surface water treatment plants using chloramines to ensure that our drinking water continues to comply with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) drinking water standards. The EPA imposed more stringent standards to reduce health risks associated with disinfection byproducts (DBP) in chlorinated water. These DBPs form when chlorine reacts with naturally-occurring organic materials, such as decomposing plant material, in the raw water. Since chloramine is not as reactive as chlorine with organic materials, it produces substantially lower concentrations of DBPs.

Location: Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Somerset and Union Counties
Issued: 02/08/2017
Start Time: 4:20 p.m.
End Time: 4:20 p.m.
Expires: 04/15/2017
Contact Name: Customer Service Center
Contact Phone: 1-800-272-1325
Posted in: Other