UPDATE 4/17/2017: The District began the reintroduction of chloramines as a means of secondary disinfection to its water supply. The start-up is coordinated with the beginning of the District’s spring flushing program, which also began today. This coordination will help ensure an efficient system-wide conversion to chloramines. Customers nearest the Branch Brook Filtration Plant and in particular those from downtown Kennebunk and southerly into Wells should notice a reduction in chlorine taste and odor within a day or two. Most customers should notice the difference within a week or two. Any questions should be referred to the Filtration Plant, at 207-985-2362.
As recently announced in a WRITTEN NOTICE that was mailed to all of our customers, we will soon be changing our final step of water disinfection from the use of free chlorine to a combined form of chlorine, called chloramine. More specifically, the type of chloramine we will be utilizing is monochloramine. This method of water disinfection has been in use throughout the United States and the world for about 100 years. The written notice provided some information as to the reasons for the change and some answers to several frequently asked questions.
As stated in the notice, the primary reasons to return to the practice of using chloramines are to reduce the formation of disinfection by-products and to make our water compatible with that of our neighboring interconnected utilities. Along that line, it should be noted that along southern coastal Maine from York to Portland, we are the only water utility that does not utilize chloramination. Also, currently over 300,000 Maine residents are being served by water utilities that chloraminate, including Portland Water District (since 1938), Auburn Water District, Bangor Water District, Bath Water District, Brewer Water District, Maine Water Co. Biddeford & Saco Division, Lewiston Water Department, York Water District and eleven other water utilities.
In addition to the above, we feel that disinfecting our water with monochloramines will provide our customers with a safer and more aesthetically pleasing water than if we were to continue to disinfect it with free chlorine. In order to provide additional information for those who are more interested in the topic, we offer the following: