Grading Louisiana’s Water Systems – Did Your Hometown Water Pass?
It seems as if it happens almost every week. There is a report of a Louisiana municipal water system being down for several hours for repairs or customers of a particular water system are under a boil water advisory. Water is vital to our lives. Having safe running water for our homes is not only a convenience, it's really a matter of modern survival.
But if water is as important as we know it is, then how is it that some of your reading this narrative right now won't drink the water that comes out of your faucet at home? Why is it that some water in Louisiana is so "dirty" that customers don't want to wash their clothes much less their families in it?
The short answer to those questions is infrastructure. The longer answer is money to fix, repair, or replace failing infrastructure. That's the situation that many communities and water providers find themselves in these days. Much of the water systems that we rely on in many communities have more than outlived their useful service. Needless to say, if we don't address the infrastructure idea soon, then a boil water advisory won't be an exception, it will be the rule.
For the most part yes. In fact, for 65% of water systems in the state that is a resounding, yes. The Louisiana Department of Health has released grades for water systems in the state and about 2/3rds of them provide the kind of service needed to earn a passing grade.
About 20% of the state's community water systems earned the grade of "C" or average. Which when it comes to water is not the kind of grade you really want. But, a "C" is still better than a "D" or an "F" and unfortunately about 15% of Louisiana's community water systems fall into the failing or almost failing bucket.
The Louisiana Department of Health has published an interactive map on its site that allows you to click on your parish or your community and see how your water system is graded out.
For example, the City of Broussard Water System earned a grade of "B". The Ossun Heights Water System clocked in with a grade of "A" as did the water system at Le Triomphe.
The City of St. Martinville received a grade of "C". Their score was lowered because of state violations and maintenance deficiencies. The City of Breaux Bridge Water System earned a grade of "B". Meanwhile, the Village of Parks was given a grade of "F" for a lot of reasons. Many of these have been duly noted on social media posts from the Parks area.
You can view your community water system grade right here. Just click on the parish and then click on your water system. I hope you won't be heading to the store to buy bottled water but if you do, make sure you know which bottled water is actually best for you too.
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