UPDATED: Pink Water Draws Concerns in St. Michael, Albertville

The Joint Powers Water officials that oversee the area's tap water supply are aware of the situation. The colored water is harmless in normal doses.

Update 2:31 P.M.

According to the Joint Powers Water Board Website, the issue has been resolved and water discoloration should no longer be happening. Any customers with questions about their water can call Joint Powers at 763-497-3611.


Residents were alarmed around St. Michael and Albertville when tap water, including water for showers and for drinking that morning glass of water, turned pink throughout the area.

According to e-mails from Patch readers, both city governments and the Joint Powers Water board, which overseas the operation of the St. Michael-Albertville-Hanover area tap water supply, is aware of the situation.

The culprit was a pump that feeds postassium permanganate into the system. The pump, residents said they heard from water board members, was left on and put too much of the compound into the system.

Potassium permanganate is not toxic, and is often used as an oxidizer in water supplies. It removes the "sulfur" smell that can infiltrate into wells and can also be an effective treament for waste water.

David Heairet, an Albertville resident, said his water was running "purple" this morning, even a magenta color in the shower, as his wife showering.

"It does make you wonder what else they're putting in there," he said. "This was non-toxic, but what other pumps are there?"

The Joint Powers Water Board releases an annual statement about water quality in the St. Michael-Albertville area. Local water has scored high on all measurable scales for quality, and the cities have earned awards for their handling and treatment of wastewater in the past.

Momof2boys May 09, 2012 at 01:29 AM
Wondering if the person who made this mistake is still employed? This was too big of a mistake for them not to get fired and now I have to sit and run my water and had to go purchase bottled water. There is no way I would give my child this hot pink water that is coming out of our faucets and filling out toilets...and we got a line of crap telling us its safe, dont think so!
Mom of four May 09, 2012 at 02:14 AM
I totally agree! Not good! Shouldn't there be a backup someone that is double checking things? I love having to go buy bottled water! Aren't we already paying for our water? I hope there are some new rules for these people!
not a fan of pink water May 09, 2012 at 02:35 AM
still pink here too! If we need to run our water to rid of the pink. Who is paying our water bills?
tps May 12, 2012 at 03:10 PM
What we find interesting are the "momsof_" that require the water to be pink in order for them to question their water's safety. You need to be diligent about what you put into your child's body, no matter what the color. It took having pink water before thinking twice about your water. And as for off with his head/fire him ideas? Wow, good to know you have never made a mistake at your jobs like the rest of us have. Ease up a bit, life is a lot more easy when you do.
dkaeja December 19, 2012 at 04:02 PM
Wiki.answer.com says: " There have been reported cases of pink tap water from the over treatment of the water by the utility dosing the water with too much potassium permanganate. Potassium permanganate is used to remove bad taste and odors in water, and when overused can yield a rosy shade of pink. At low levels the material is benign. Higher levels (purple colour) should be reported to the utility and not consumed." http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_would_make_tap_water_pink_and_is_it_dangerous The Columbus Dispatch reports on Dec 19, 2012: "SOUTH BLOOMFIELD, Ohio -- If the water's pink, you shouldn't drink." And: "Scot Foltz, environmental manager of drinking water at the Ohio EPA's central district office, said potassium permanganate can irritate the throat and stomach. The sick, young and elderly are particularly susceptible to the chemical's effects, he said." http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/local/2007/10/06/PinkWater.ART_ART_10-06-07_B1_37845ES.html


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