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The original item was published from 12/8/2022 2:47:47 PM to 12/12/2022 10:05:02 PM.

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Posted on: December 8, 2022

[ARCHIVED] Two-Block Downtown Area Water System Disinfection Successful

Senior Project Engineer Michael Mart works with contracted staff near a fire hydrant. The City of Bismarck has successfully resolved a water issue in a two-block area of businesses and apartments downtown.


City staff shut down water service to buildings along Fifth Street between Main Avenue and Thayer Avenue on December 3 to disinfect the water main and service lines. Following negative test results from water samples taken from the area’s water main, samples were tested from the 11 sites within, and near, the water disruption. Each of these tests came back negative on Wednesday, December 7. When the test results were received, communications about the test results were sent to affected buildings. 


“The testing results showed us the disinfection process was successful,” said City Engineer Gabe Schell. “With temperatures below zero for the early portion of that Saturday morning, we really need to thank those City of Bismarck staff and contractors who were out there doing this work and ensuring our city’s infrastructure continues to be safe and reliable.”  


The City of Bismarck Public Works Utility Operations and Engineering departments had been working to resolve this water quality issue over the past month following a routine water quality test in an area of new construction that tested positive for total coliform. Coliforms are bacteria that are primarily harmless but can be an indicator that other, more harmful, bacteria could make their way into a water system.  Customer Service Field Lead Mike Fischer reattaches a water meter to a service line.


“Drinking water in Bismarck continues to be a safe, essential service that people can rely on,” said Public Works Utility Operations Director Michelle Klose. “We are extremely happy these test results show we have resolved this problem and appreciated the cooperation with the businesses and residents affected. Our routine testing is an invaluable tool to ensure we can proactively care for the water services we provide to our residents.”


Public Works routinely tests water quality in more than 40 locations throughout Bismarck, with 80 samples tested every month. This two-block, downtown area was the only location in which coliforms were present in the October early indication tests.

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