Rancho Cordova residents question safety of yellow water

Dingy, yellow water has some residents in Rancho Cordova questioning if their water is safe.

"It's disgusting," Rancho Cordova resident Chris Lyon said. "It looks gross and there's definitely something wrong with it."

Lyon took a bath this morning and thought the water seemed off. But, it wasn't until he logged onto Facebook and saw others post about the yellow water that he realized there may be a bigger problem.

So he called Golden State Water.

"They switched the water supply yesterday and as water is now it's not fit for human consumption," Lyon recounted. "That's what they told me."

Lyon immediately ran to the store and bought cases and cases of water. He's not just worried about his health, but also the health of his dogs and his cat.

"The damage has already been done if my pets drank this water and I've already bathed in it. Who knows?" Lyon said.

When Lyon drained his tub and refilled it, the water was still yellow.

Paul Schubert with Golden State Water insists the water is safe. He said the discoloration is sediment, which is brought on by switching the water supply from groundwater wells to their treatment plant in Gold River, which was brought online Wednesday.

"In years past, we'd get out in front of it" Schubert explained. "Open the hydrants, dump the system out and make it nice and clear. But because of the drought, we're not doing that method this time."

It's unclear how many people are being affected by the dingy, discolored water. Golden State supplies water to 14,000 customers in Rancho Cordova.

Schubert said they responded to two dozen phone calls Friday and crews have been out all day opening hydrants in areas where they've had complaints.

As for Lyon, he hasn't seen any crews in his area and he wishes he'd gotten some type of warning beforehand.

"I'm fine with brushing my teeth with bottled water for a few days just as long as I'm given a heads up" Lyon said.

"We should have notified customers beforehand," Shubert admitted. "Next year, I'll have that on my checklist of things to do before we fire this plant up."

If you see discolored water, officials advise you to run it for five minutes in order to flush the sediments out. If that doesn't work, call Golden State Water.


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