JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – As frigid temperatures are set to reach Jackson by the end of this week, Jackson’s water system may be in danger again.
Temperatures are expected to stay in the low teens from Thursday night through Sunday afternoon as Jackson officials are hoping for the best while preparing for the worst.
Freezing weather crippled Jackson’s water system in February 2021, leaving neighbors without water for weeks.
According to Mayor Chokwe A. Lumumba, no promises can be made surrounding the integrity of the water system this time.
“While there have been a number of efforts ongoing to increase the sustainability and make necessary improvements at our water treatment facility, we are still vulnerable. I do believe that we have made some improvements that are better than where we were two Februarys ago, but we are in no position to promise that sustained Arctic temperatures cannot have a significant impact on our water treatment facility and other areas of our infrastructure,” he said.
Interim Third Party Manager Ted Henifin seems optimistic in the work crews have done at the O.B. Curtis Water Treatment Facility so for, but he made no guarantees ahead of the cold weather.
“We’ve got the systems in much better shape than they’ve probably ever been in preparation for cold weather. And we continue that work today, and we will continue it throughout the week. While a lot of work has been done over the years since the freeze, we haven’t really replaced hundreds of miles of piping that’s also susceptible. It’s no guarantees because we are very vulnerable, but I think we’re in really, really as good a shape as we can be in going into this freeze,” Henifin said.
The chemical house of the O.B. Curtis Water Treatment Facility and hundreds of miles of pipe have yet to be weatherized.