From Niki Sappington, City of BarnesvilleThe current frequency and length of discolored water incidents throughout the City of Barnesville’s distribution system has been caused by the higher than normal rainfall the City has experienced in the past two months.The heavy rainfall has caused the contents of City Pond to experience a higher consistency of the chemical element manganese (Mn). Manganese is a naturally occurring element in rocks and minerals that under normal conditions settles at the bottom of bodies of water.Disturbances of the pond by heavy rains and a possible turn-over have caused manganese to be more thoroughly mixed in the pond and it is entering the City’s distribution system. The presence of manganese itself does not discolor the water so the water is completely clear when it leaves the treatment plant. However, as the water is distributed through the City in the distribution system, the manganese oxidizes. The oxidized manganese discolors the water and the discoloration can range from yellow to darker brown.To deal with these occurrences in the short-term, the City will go to affected areas and flush the hydrants to let the discolored water flow out of the system. If there are incidents in your area, contact City Hall at 770-358-0181. It is important to note that even though the water is discolored it is still completely safe for normal use and the manganese levels in the system are well below any health related limits.