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Fredonia water experiencing taste and odor issues, but health officials say it's safe to use and consume

The Chautauqua County Health Department is working with village officials and determined the water is still safe.

FREDONIA, N.Y. — The Chautauqua County Health Department wants to assure Village of Fredonia residents that despite some taste and odor issues with their water, it is safe to drink.

The department was made aware of the issues and flushing is currently underway in Fredonia and the Town of Pomfret to clear any discolored water from the system. Village officials will continue to monitor the areas where water quality issues were being reported.

An initial investigation indicates there may be multiple factors leading to the color and odor issues including:

  • The Village of Fredonia recently purchased water from and sold water to the City of Dunkirk through an interconnection between the two municipalities. Additionally, water demand in the Village has increased significantly due to the increase of SUNY Fredonia’s population. All of these scenarios have an impact on flow direction in the Village’s distribution system, which can result in tuberculation in the water main to turn the water discolored accompanied with an iron-like metallic taste.
  • Water temperature in the Village’s drinking water reservoir has increased. An increase in temperature may result in an increase in microbial growth that can lead to minor taste and odor issues, even after being adequately treated in the water treatment plant.

A major, multi-million dollar upgrade project is currently underway at the water plant, leaving only a portion of the plant in operation. The majority of the work is expected to be completed later this week or early next week. Health officials say once that is done, residents can expect the water quality throughout the village to continuously improve. 

If you have any questions or concerns, you can contact the Village of Fredonia at (716) 679-2304 or the Chautauqua County Department of Health and Human Services at (716) 753-4481.