Officials Say Moline's Water Is Safe Despite The Smell - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Officials Say Moline's Water Is Safe Despite The Smell


If the water out of your tap tastes funny, you're not alone. Moline sent out a notice Thursday, March 14, 2013, about the smell and taste of its water.

The city says it's safe to drink, but because of snow melt and rain, which has caused river levels to go up and down, water workers are treating the water with different chemicals.

At the Moline Water Treatment plant workers are monitoring the Mississippi River too see if it's going to be normal.

"The number one thing is to make sure that the water is safe and we're achieving our goal," says Moline Utilities Manager Greg Swanson.

The melting snow melting and recent rain is the main culprit behind smells and odd tastes in the tap water.

"Basically everything had gone to sleep over the winter," adds Swanson, "Then the rain came and the snow melting increased the river's flow by 200 fold."

The increased river flow changed the character of the Mississippi River. It also washed debris from tributary rivers into the Mississippi.

"Think about what's going on in our backyard," says Swanson, "The leaves are laying on the ground and decaying over the winter. So, when rain and melt events occur, all of that material gets washed into the river."

To ensure the safety of our drinking water the treatment process has to change.

"It's a special challenge to keep and maintain the aesthetic quality under these current conditions," says Swanson.

The bottom line is tap water is safe.

"Our team drinks it, I've got a glass right behind me and I've been drinking it," says the Utilities General Manager.

There is a bright spot to dealing with smelly and strange tasting water.

"We're happy to know that this is a sign that spring is knocking on our door."

Test on the river done on Friday afternoon show the Mississippi is starting to get back to normal. However, if there are any major changes with our weather the strange smell and taste might come back.

Any questions concerning the city's water can be directed to Greg Swanson, City of Moline Utilities Manager at 309-524-2301.

For more information, check out Moline's website at