EWEB: Water Safe; Power Secure
The Eugene Water and Electric Board said some customers report water tasting like chlorine or smoke. Spokesperson Joe Harwood emphasized tap water is safe to drink, and exceeds state and federal health standards.
Because of the fires, the utility has done more testing of raw and treated water. “We’ve actually increased our chlorine a little bit and we’ve also started using powdered carbon in the filtration process," said Harwood. "The powdered carbon should, over the next day or two, start alleviating some of that earthy or ashy taste and smell.”
Harwood said the adjustments began Wednesday, but there are 800 miles of pipe from 28 storage facilities, so the changes will take some time to notice.
EWEB runs three power generating projects up the McKenzie River, and all are currently offline. However, said Harwood, “There’s no danger of a power shortage in Eugene. Roughly 80 percent of the power that we deliver comes from other sources than EWEB-owned generations.”
Harwood said most EWEB power comes from the Bonneville Power Administration, which is not affected by Oregon fires.
He noted over 3,000 customers from Thurston to Vida are still without power. Harwood said crews are ready to re-energize those lines as soon as it’s safe to do so, but cautions it may be a day or two or three.
EWEB's power outage map is here.