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High water demand in Darien leading to discolored water

UPDATE 5 p.m. — First Selectman Jayme Stevenson has issued a statement regarding the water discoloration from David Knauf, head of the town’s Department of Health and the state’s department of health:

“Today residents have raised concerns about the discolored water noted in Darien. It is important to note that no compromise to the safety and integrity of the supply system has occurred. The discoloration is similar to what happens when the service lines are flushed. Testing performed today showed adequate levels of chlorine to protect public health. Residents are asked to reduce their water usage until the system clears.”

1:06 p.m. — The town of Darien is waiting for an update from the state’s department of health on the water discoloration, which is working with the town’s health department to clarify what the problem is.

Aquarion posted this alert on their website for Darien, New Canaan and Stamford customers:

Some customers in Darien, New Canaan and Stamford may be experiencing discolored water or low pressure due to excessive water demand as a result of the current heat wave.

We recommend that you do not use water until it is clear, as it may cause discoloration of your laundry and is not aesthetically pleasing. This discoloration results from the temporary disturbance of the water flow, which stirs up naturally occurring minerals.

We expect water demand to return to normal levels when temperatures cool this evening. If you have any questions, please call Customer Service at 1-800-732-9678.

11:25 a.m. — Because of a high water demand in Darien, Stamford and New Canaan on Wednesday, some Aquarion customers are getting discolored water, the water company confirmed this morning.

“Do not drink discolored water,” Peter Fazekas, Aquarion’s public relations manager told the Darien Times Wednesday. He said the brown water is being caused by possbile “low pressure due to excessive demand on our water.”

The Darien Times office received calls from residents about the discolored water and a possible water main break in Stamford that could be affecting Darien and New Canaan. Aquarion confirmed the water main break but said it is not causing water to be brown.

Calls to the Aquarion customer service line inform residents of the water emergency and that the company is working on it .

Selectman Dave Campbell, serving as acting first selectman this week, told The Darien Times that the town plans to do use its emergency notification system to alert residents of the water problem — but was having trouble getting answers from Aquarion.

The problem, Fazekas said, should be resolved by Wednesday night.

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