WEST MEMPHIS, AR (abc24.com) - Experts in West Memphis say the water is safe to drink. Some routine maintenance at a plant caused it to turn brown and cloudy Wednesday night, worrying a lot of people.
"It's disgusting," said West Memphis resident Shelby O'Brien, describing the water that poured out of faucets in her neighborhood. "It's like brown and cloudy, that's really nasty. One of my friends told me she had to brush her teeth yesterday with a bottle of water because the water coming out her faucet was brown and cloudy. It was gross."
Alex Hickman was in the middle of housework, but stopped after realizing something wasn't right with the water.
"I was washing dishes last night. I was filling up a glass to wash it out, and I was like whoaaaa," she said. "I stepped away from the dishes and went about my way."
But according to Josh Grabowski, who manages the water department for West Memphis utilities, "It's just air bubbles in the water. It dissipates."
Grabowski said while pumping water from a tank at the plant during routine maintenance, "We pumped it down too far. While the pump was pulling in water it pulled in air also. It mixed with water and caused it to become cloudy."
He says the water was and still is safe to use and consume. To prove it, he took a chug. "It tastes fine - nothing wrong with the water."
West Memphis utilities flushed the water system through fire hydrants throughout the city all day Thursday.