By Tim Linscott
After dealing with a set of hurdles to have the water tower in Grant cleaned and painted, the final stages of the project are at hand.
In August of last year the city signed a 10-year contract with Utility Service Company, Inc., of Georgia to have the water tower drained, power washed and painted inside and out. In mid-July of this year the project started with the tower drained, prompting city wells to pump 24 hours a day.
During the time the tank was being painted a communication issue between the main well and the computer system resulted in low pressure at the well. The issue was resolved within 15 minutes, according to Gary Beckler, Public Works Foremen for the City of Grant, but the low pressure resulted in a CodeRED notification on July 25 to Grant residents requiring water be boiled before being consumed.
By Aug. 2 the boil order was lifted due to city water samples passing all 20 state mandated tests.
Dana Harris, Grant City Administrator, explained that the boil order was issued according to state regulations.
“We issued the notice to follow procedures,” Harris said, noting the water supply was fine.
The city office received several phone calls on the water quality issue after the boil order was released but the system was not compromised and the water was safe.
The city office has a pressure gauge to monitor the water system and all utility workers have a 24-hour notice system that will keep them in the know at all times in case of an emergency.
The water tower is currently full but not online as of press time. The tank was drained and filled with two water tests conducted on Monday and Tuesday. The samples had to pass both tests before being placed back online.
Beckler and Harris were confident that by Thursday (today) or tomorrow the tank should be back online.
“We haven’t failed a water test that I can ever remember,” Beckler said.
Test results for the water tower samples were not back by press time.
Repairs on the tower, in addition to the painting inside and out, included all new seals installed, new ladders installed and removing the cathodic protection system.
The last time the tower was painted was 21 years ago.
Beckler enjoyed the fact that Utility Services, Inc., would be keeping the tower up on all OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) requirements annually.
“It is better to take care of it every year than wait several years to try to catch up,” Beckler said.
The contract includes an annual inspection with any touch-up paint work done as well as draining the tank every other year, far more frequent than the state requirement of having it done every five years.
“We will be doing more than the state requires to stay on top of it,” Beckler said.