Summerville officials address public water contamination advisery & hand out free drinkable water to residents

Febuary 4th, 2020 – 3:00 PM

WZQZ Radio

(Via WZQZ Radio)

Summerville City Officials were busy Tuesday morning handing out free drinkable water to residents who are customers of the city’s water system after the EPA and the EPD notified the city on Monday that their public water system contained two chemicals that do not meet new Federal standards.

City Manager Janice Galloway took time away from handing out water to the public to talk to WZQZ News.  The City Manager says that for now, the city is looking at what kind of carbon filters will be available that can remove the chemicals from the water coming from Racoon Creek near Berryton.  This after a water test from Raccoon Creek showed a slightly higher amount of two man-made chemicals called Perfluoroctane Sulfonate (PFOS) and Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA).

The city has engineers assessing the situation and looking for the available solutions as far as additional filters at the Summerville Water Treatment Plant on Filter Plant Road is concerned.  It is too early to tell when the issue will be resolved because that depends on the availability, delivery and installation of the proper filters to get the water to meet Federal Standards.

Ms. Galloway said that the EPD and the EPA began testing water systems across the State of Georgia last year and tested the water systems in the state first.  Now, the Feds are getting around to testing water quality in smaller systems such as Summerville’s.  Ms. Galloway said that she was unsure if any of the surrounding water systems have already been tested to meet the new standards.

The City Manager also said that the Low Springs water supply is not affected – that water meets Federal standards.

Ms. Galloway told WZQZ News that the city will continue to have drinkable water available for the city’s water customers until the problem is resolved.

Here are some of the questions and concerns:

  • The water advisory affects ONLY City of Summerville water customers.  If you pay your water bill to the Chattooga County Water District, City of Menlo, Town of Trion or Town of Lyerly – You are NOT affected.
  • The water is safe to use for bathing, washing clothes, washing dishes, cleaning etc.  Just don’t drink the water.  Use bottled water instead.
  • Boiling the water is NOT an option
  • The City of Summerville has a tanker of drinkable water parked at City Hall.  YOU MUST BRING YOUR OWN CONTAINERS – but the water is free of charge.
  • If your children go to school in the Chattooga County School System and they attend Leroy Massey Elementary, Summerville Middle or Chattooga High School – they will be provided bottled water for drinking.  If your children go to school at Menlo Elementary or Lyerly Elementary or Trion City Schools – they are not affected.



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