Water Woes: Westgate family upset with quality - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Water Woes: Westgate family upset with quality

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The sound of running water, relaxing for many, is now a source of stress for Hanna Prickett.

"Rust," she said, looking at the faucet in her Westgate home. "Nasty rust comes out of it."

Prickett said several times a month, her tap water comes out brown.

"Swamp water," she said.

She shot video of it earlier this week. It happened around eight in the evening, right as she was getting her children ready for bed.

"We had to take them up to Maynard because we couldn't give them a bath," she said.

Now, she said she's fed up, and wants the city to fix it.

"To me, it seems like it's getting swept under the rug," Prickett said.

On the other hand, mayor Don Bushaw said it's a normal symptom of an aging water tower.

"That tower was put up in 1905, I believe," Bushaw said.

Because of that, and the deteriorating condition, they flush the system twice a month.

"When you flush that tank, the water gets rusty," he said. "It goes away within a few hours."

He admits, flushing at 8 p.m. was perhaps not the wisest idea, and will address it.

"Maybe that was a mistake," Bushaw said. "He's a new employee."

Prickett said some are refusing to pay their water bills, saying the quality is so low, they're not really getting to use the service.

"I don't want to comment on that," Bushaw said.

He said the water is safe to drink, and is tested weekly.

Still, Prickett doesn't trust it. She's just seen too many colors coming out of her faucets.

Bushaw said the city plans to replace the tower, but at this point it's just too expensive. They will also drain it and repaint the interior in about two weeks.

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