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Fort Myers transitioning back to city-sourced water

Water and national security
Posted at 9:52 AM, Jun 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-15 06:12:47-04

FORT MYERS, Fla. — The City of Fort Myers announced it will transition back to city-sourced drinking water starting Wednesday.

In a statement released Tuesday, city officials said the city is prepared to resume supplying its own water.

"The City of Fort Myers has received drinking water since late-January from Lee County in order to satisfy unprecedented demand by an increase in population," the statement reads. "This assistance from the county enabled the city to complete two new water wells, fill all water tanks to capacity, rehabilitate three existing wells, and begin planning a full expansion of water infrastructure citywide."

The transition will take place in the same three phases that the imported supply was introduced back in January, but in reverse order:

June 15 — Phases 3A and 3B (taking approximately three days to complete)
June 20 (projected date) — Phases 1 and 2 (taking approximately three days to complete)

Wednesday, the city will isolate and flush the affected distribution system, which will allow prompt connection back to the city’s water source. This process is expected to take three days to fully complete.

What Customers Should Know and Expect:

  • If possible, please avoid utilizing water in and outside your home 8AM-8PM.
  • Customers should be aware that they may experience short-term changes to their water quality during flushing, including cloudy or discolored water. Customers are advised to flush any cloudy or discolored water that may enter their plumbing by running a faucet for several minutes until the water clears.
  • If a customer experiences sediments and/or discoloration in water, this may be due to isolating of pipes in his/her immediate vicinity. Should this be the case, please close waterspouts and allow several hours for the isolation and flushing to complete. If you witness crews nearby flushing water, that indicates the process is underway in your area.
  • While we do not expect issues with water pressure, customers should expect a reduction in water pressure as we transition back to the city source; however, the pressure will be higher than what was experienced prior.
  • As part of the transition back to city water, customers will NOT experience any adverse health effects.

Special Notice to Dialysis and Aquatic Customers:

Lee County Utilities utilizes chloramines (which is a longer lasting disinfectant) for disinfection of drinking water, while the City of Fort Myers uses free chlorine (which is a stronger disinfectant). Both disinfectants are effective and adequate; however, should not be utilized at the same time. The following customers must be aware of this change back to the free chlorine disinfectant.

  • Customers on dialysis who use a proportioning machine to prepare dialysate are advised to contact their physician to obtain the appropriate steps to accommodate the change in disinfectants.
  • Providers of dialysis must do the same.
  • Customers who have fish tanks or aquatic species are advised to contact a professional aquarist to avoid any problems associated with certain disinfectants.