Canton residents get water notice ... but is it safe to drink?


    A letter sent to Canton residents said the water treatment facility did not meet requirements, but it also said residents have nothing to worry about. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

    Some residents of a mountain community were caught by surprise after receiving a notice about their drinking water.

    The letter states that the Canton water treatment facility did not meet requirements, but it goes on to say that residents have nothing to worry about.

    "The water is safe,” said Canton Mayor Zeb Smathers. "It was safe then, its safe now."

    According to the notice sent to Canton residents, on December 17, chlorine residual did not meet the minimum contact time due to a valve malfunction on the chlorine cylinder.

    "As required by state law our employees did exactly what they were supposed to do,” said Smathers. “They reported it, it was fixed."

    While the letter may have spurred some initial shock, many say once they read it through, that went away.

    "We didn't find anything alarming about the letter,” said BearWaters Brewing Company Co-owner Kevin Sandefur. “It was just a notification that looked like an incident report that the chlorine level was a little low."

    "When you’re making a product that's 90 percent water that's coming from the town, you want to make sure it’s safe and there is not an issue that will affect the product," said Smathers.

    But Sandefur said even if there was an issue with the water, they would be fine at BearWaters.

    "We have UV sterilizers and filtration systems that filter city water and remove all the chemicals that they put in it anyway," said Sandefur.

    Though city officials and the notice state the water is safe and no action is needed by residents, Sandefur has a solution for anyone who is still worried.

    "If anyone is concerned we have plenty of good beer to drink," said Sandefur.

    Mayor Smathers said if anyone still has questions or concerns, to call town hall.

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