JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – A Jackson hazmat crew and the Ridgeland Fire Department responded to a chlorine leak at the O.B. Curtis Water Treatment Facility on Monday, September 19.
According to the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), officials identified a chlorine leak in the chemical building. All personnel were evacuated immediately from the chemical building. That building is designed to have air scrubbers to keep chlorine from leaving the structure and reportedly worked as designed.
Ridgeland Fire Department, Jackson Fire Department Hazmat Team and O.B. Curtis maintenance staff identified three leaking valves and secured the area. No other evacuations of surrounding areas were necessary.
“The chemical building at O.B. Curtis is an area where increased focused needs to occur to abate additional safety hazards. We continually work to improve the safety of this facility. While this was a chlorine leak, the Mississippi State Department of Health engineers monitored the water disinfection during the leak; the disinfection process was uninterrupted, water being distributed to the public is still safe for consumption as long as you follow MSDH precautions,” says Jim Craig, MSDH Incident Commander.
No injuries occurred and fire officials gave the all-clear at 11:08 a.m.
Work will continue as normal at the plant on Monday. City officials said crews are working to return raw water pump #4 to service. The pump itself has been repaired, but the electrical power feed was previously damaged. Crews will be working to repair the power feed on Monday.
As soon as power is restored, raw water pump #4 is expected to return to service. Raw water pump #2 won’t be installed until raw water pump #4 has been in service long enough to assess reliability.
City officials said water pressure at the O.B. Curtis plant has remained at a steady pressure over the past 24 hours and is currently working at 90 PSI. All tanks are maintaining good margins for overhead storage. Onsite storage at the plant has also remained stable.
City officials said pressure should be stable throughout city. The boil water notice was lifted last week.