MONROE, Ind. (WANE) – Students at Adams Central Community Schools have been given bottled water to drink amid concerns about the town of Monroe’s drinking water supply after brown tap water was found and an investigation showed the town’s iron filter had not been functioning for more than a year.
After Adams Central Schools closed early on March 2 due to water quality concerns, a letter was sent to parents and community members on Monday that details a host of issues with the town of Monroe’s treatment plant and water tower, and provides results of tests that were conducted.
The letter from District Superintendent Dr. Lori M. Stiglitz indicates that last week, Adams Central had multiple additional tests run by an independent water testing firm and called in the Indiana Department of Environmental Management to assist.
It was on the recommendation of the independent water testers that prompted Adams Central to begin providing bottled water last week. The town of Monroe also issued a brief boil water advisory.
IDEM took numerous samples from all locations of the school, as well as some from around the town of Monroe last Thursday. The samples were then taken to the State Board of Health in Indianapolis.
The letter indicates that more than eight samples revealed last Thursday that free chlorine amounts did not meet the necessary standard of a .2 to 1.0 level. Free chlorine is used to ‘catch’ bacteria in the water system. Meanwhile, six bacterial samples came back clear of bacteria last Friday.
Multiple issues, all highlighted in the letter, seem to be affecting the water quality in Monroe. The Monroe treatment plant’s iron filter has not been working more than a year, and the aerators are not working properly.
The letter also revealed that the pipes from the Monroe water tower to the school go from 12 inches to 8 inches which allows sediments to flow to the school inappropriately.
Adams Central said that they would continue to provide bottled water, particularly because of tests that revealed low chlorine amounts.