Jackson, Mississippi struggles to return pressure to its troubled water system after breaks likely caused by cold weather


The city of Jackson, Mississippi, is struggling to restore pressure to its water system after issuing a citywide boil water advisory, the city said in an update Monday morning.

The troubled system lost pressure due to line breaks likely caused by the weather, according to an earlier statement from the city.

“We continue to fight to restore pressure to the water system,” the city said. “We are producing significant amounts of water and putting it into the system, but the pressure is not increasing, despite these efforts at the plants.”

The city asked residents to “refrain from reporting loss of pressure,” as it said it is “very aware of system pressure issues.”

The warning follows widespread problems in the autumn with water pressure and brown water coming out of taps and toilets. Neighbors have been warning about the problems for years.

Last year in February, a ferocious winter storm ravaged parts of Mississippi, including the capital, breaking pipes and leaving tens of thousands of residents without water for weeks.

City officials said crews have been working to find and repair line breaks since this Christmas weekend and are working with the federal Environmental Protection Agency, the update added .

Even if the pressure is restored, the city said to still boil the water until further notice. The city also listed several locations for water distribution Monday, in a separate update.

The city asked citizens to turn off running faucets Sunday afternoon while temperatures are above freezing. The city also asked residents to check their businesses and churches for leaks and broken pipes.

“We thank you in advance for your help and understanding. We understand that this is a terrible time. Please know that we do not dislike issuing the notice during the Christmas holidays,” according to the statement.

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves issued an emergency order in August after major operational failures at the OB Curtis Water Treatment Plant in Jackson caused widespread problems with the city’s water system.

Jackson has been dealing with problems with its water system for some time. Residents and activists point to years of systemic neglect as a major driver. Some city leaders have blamed the state for not responding to their calls for help to improve the decrepit water system.


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