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Water remains safe to drink despite unusual taste

Musky smell, odor result of algae bloom, Manatee County officials say.

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  • | 8:40 a.m. April 28, 2017
  • East County
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If your drinking water tastes a little funny, do not worry too much. It is still safe to drink, Manatee County Utilities officials say.

This time of year, water customers may notice a somewhat different taste and odor as a result of algae blooms that are common on Lake Manatee, the county drinking water supply.

Utilities officials said today water tests over the past several weeks indicate elevated levels of blue-green algae which leaves an earthy and/or musty taste or odor in the water. There are no known health effects caused by the presence of these compounds.
In addition to its standard water treatment standards, Utilities officials add a powder-activated carbon to the treatment process to prevent any effect on customers’ water. The water remains entirely safe to drink.

“It is our hope that by informing the public of this potential impact of the algal bloom, we are able to alleviate any concerns that may arise in case a customer detects an earthy taste or smell in their water,” said Manatee County Water Manager Mark Simpson. “We will continue monitoring and treatment efforts until water quality returns to normal.”

Customers can offset the change in taste by using a filtration system, chilling the water before drinking or adding drops of lemon juice to a glass of water.
For additional information or questions about this or other water quality issues,  contact the Manatee County Water Treatment Plant Quality Control Laboratory staff at 746-3020, Ext. 228 or Ext. 226.



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