People who live and work in the city of Jackson could face water outages or low pressure while a major water main break is fixed.
The Hinds County Board of Supervisors and Mayor have declared a state of emergency over water issues. They set aside $10,000 to go towards bottled water in the event of a major water outage.
Three breaks to a 48-inch water main near Forrest Avenue need to be repaired, and those repairs are not easy to do.
“This line is unique that any repairs done to it have to be fabricated or made,” said Mayor Tony Yarber. “But the other thing is, and common theme in the city is deferred maintenance. So when you defer it and don’t get it done the outcome is we have to conduct these type of operations to potentially save the city’s water system”
Repairs are tentatively scheduled to begin March 11 and will take at least 48-to-72 hours.
Jerriot Smash, director of Public Works said no work will be done before March 10, to minimize the effect on schools. Jackson Public Schools begin Spring Break that next week.
The city is telling people to stock up on bottled water, fill bathtubs and water jugs before the water mains are shut off.
That shutoff could mean no water for half to two-thirds of the city.
“There will be concerns about water pressure during the outage, people will experience either no water pressure or little water pressure,” said Yarber.
Areas of Jackson that do have water could face significant pressure loss. That means those homes and businesses will be under a boil water notice.
When the repairs are complete, and the water is turned back on – the entire city will likely be under a boil water notice for another 48-hours.
The city is recommending residents and businesses sign up for Code Red alerts and check on your neighbors.
“Knock on doors, check on people, talk to them, just find out what is going on,” said Yarber
Jackson’s water is provided by the Ross Barnett Reservoir and surface water from the Pearl River. The water is treated at two different state of the art class “A” facilities, O. B. Curtis and J. H. Fewell Water Treatment Plants.