The water looks odd in Marengo today. The town of about 25hundred depends on a small municipal drinking-water supply and public-works director Stuart Stukey says the filter needs replacing. All water needs treatment and the degree may depend on where water comes from. Cities that have deep wells with a “confining aquifer” may not have much contamination with minerals like iron, but all have to disinfect their water. Stukey’s quick to point out that the town’s shallow wells don’t have any dangerous contaminants like arsenic. He’s not required to treat the water for arsenic, and regular tests also show no dangerous levels of lead or copper. The iron and manganese in the water are only an aesthetic problem. The water system’s filter normally takes those minerals out but while it awaits replacement some residents may notice a taste or odor to the tap water. Stukey says there’s not hazard to health or comfort. The only thing the iron might cause is a slight metallic taste or a red tint in loads of white-colored laundry — though he says the levels even now are “not that far over what we should be.” The engineer says the city drinking-water system’s filter “media” will be replaced, a load of gravel and anthracite not unlike a giant version of the carbon filter aquarium keepers might use. Until it’s completed next month the town’s offering samples of a rust-remover product for residents dissatisfied with the look of their laundry.
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