TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Some Tyler residents will have water that tastes and smells earthy due to a failure on the main control panel at the Lake Palestine Water Treatment Plant.
Due to a portion of the taste and odor treatment system being offline since Jan. 20, City of Tyler officials said that some consumers may experience a spike in geosmin. Geosmin is non-toxic and is safe to consume, however, it produces an earthy odor and taste. The compound is most commonly present in some foods such as beets, spinach and mushrooms.
Tyler Water Utilities has ordered a replacement panel but has not received an estimated delivery date. The ozone treatment system will not be operated until the control panel is replaced.
TWU staff will be feeding the maximum amount of powdered activated carbon at the water treatment plant to minimize the potential for any noticeable impact.
While the Lake Palestine WTP is typically able to remove upwards of 95% of the Geosmin compound between the raw water sample and the treated samples, Geosmin is detectable by humans at a very low taste and odor threshold, which is why it is treated year-round.
Customers experiencing a strong “earthy” taste and odor in their water can contact the Water Service Center at (903) 531-1285 to report their location.