Hamilton faces major water crisis, declares state of emergency

Published: Aug. 25, 2023 at 10:02 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 25, 2023 at 11:49 PM CDT
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HAMILTON, Ala. (WBRC) - A water crisis in Hamilton as city leaders declared a ‘state of emergency’ because their water levels are getting lower by the hour. It’s something that was beyond their control, according to Mayor Bob Page.

Mayor Bob Page said on Friday that this is by far the worst day he’s ever had in his eight years as mayor.

The Buttahatchee River that runs through town has become noticeably muddy. According to mayor Page, it got this way after a farmer’s pond dam burst earlier this week about six miles upstream. All that sediment and sand gushed into the river and made their way downstream. The problem is Hamilton’s water system is unable to treat the heavily muddied water.

The mayor is asking everyone to conserve their water intake.

“We can purify muddy water but when you get the extra sand and sediment that came with that broken dam from that farm pond, it overwhelmed our purification plant. This morning we declared a state of emergency because we’re going to run out of water in Hamilton, completely out of water and be out for three to four days. Even if we start purifying water by Sunday, it will take about two days to get our tanks full again,” said Mayor Bob Page.

Mayor Bob Page says the owner of that dam has been notified of what’s happened and a state agency is in the process of investigating what happened to the dam and whether it was constructed properly. Meantime, the mayor says all they can do is let the sediments clear up before the purification can begin again. He estimates it will be Tuesday before the tanks are full again.

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