Effective March 15, the Department of Water Supply will switch its water distribution disinfectant from chlorine back to chloramines for the Upper Kula water system. Customers may notice less of a chlorine odor or taste.
On Jan. 10, the department temporarily changed its disinfectant from chloramines to chlorine to clear away trace amounts of E. coli from some areas of the Upper Kula water system. Earlier this month, several consecutive days of negative water samples confirmed tap water met public health standards, and a boil water advisory was lifted for all areas of Upcountry, Maui.
Chloramines (a mix of chlorine and ammonia) have been used for disinfection in the Upper Kula water system since 1985. If you have any questions about your water quality, please call the DWS Laboratory at (808) 270-7550, or go to www.mauicounty.gov/water.
For kidney dialysis patients: The processes already in place to remove chlorine in the water will remove chloramines. Home dialysis users should consult the machine manufacturer for instructions on how to properly treat water before use. Please contact your medical professional for more information.
For fish tank owners: Chloramines are toxic to fish and must be removed from tank water, just as chlorine is toxic and must be removed. Although chlorine rapidly disappears from aquarium water on its own, that is not the case with chloramines. Steps should be taken to remove chloramines. Most pet stores sell dechlorinating agents and generally recommend using them. Chemicals used to remove chlorine should work just as well for chloramines. Consult your pet store for more information.
For more information, contact Adam Mundy at (808) 270-8046 during regular working hours. The Water Supply 24-hour service line is also available at (808) 270-7633 for water service problems.
For health concerns, contact the Maui District Office of the Hawaii Department of Health at (808) 984-8200.