Main break, filter issues lead to low water pressure in South Jackson

JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) – Homes and businesses in South Jackson are again experiencing low water pressure following a major water main break and issues at the OB Curtis treatment plant.

However, city leaders say the pressure should be fully restored by Friday morning.

“We’re pushing water through the system right now,” City Engineer Charles Williams said. “We just need a good night.”

On Wednesday night, a perfect storm of complications caused the water pressure to drop in South Jackson.

A six-inch mainline on Claiborne Avenue snapped and soon after two diaphragm trains at the Curtis plant were taken offline after failing integrity tests.

The Curtis plant treats water in two ways: the conventional method and the membrane filtration method.

On the membrane side, water is pumped and diverted to the trains, which then filter the water before it is chemically treated and sent to the distribution system, Williams previously explained.

“The trains must pass a series of tests to remain in production. Eventually they found out there was a valve that was sticking,” Williams said. “The water main break on Claiborne was just bad timing.”

Claiborne, who is a six-inch main, broke Wednesday afternoon. The city noticed water levels in two nearby storage tanks dropping around 7 p.m.

Meanwhile, the two membrane trains were temporarily taken offline around midnight.

“We couldn’t get enough water into the system to fill those reservoirs overnight, so this morning there was low water pressure,” he said. “We couldn’t recover with these things going on.”

People living in South Jackson, including the Forest Hills area and the Henley-Young Juvenile Justice Center, all began to experience low water pressure Thursday morning.

“It fell this morning and we started calling the city then,” County Administrator Kenny Wayne Jones said. “When they started calling the city, the city responded immediately.”

He said Henley-Young has never been without water and expects pressure to be restored there soon.

Said Williams, “The leak is fixed on Claiborne, and we have returned our trains to service. If all goes well tonight, we should be good to go.

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