County switches water disinfectant to clear out bacteria | News, Sports, Jobs

The Maui News

The Maui County Department of Waterway changed its water disinfectant on Monday in hopes of removing the last trace of bacteria from Upper Kula’s water system.

The department announced the proposed switch from chloramine to chlorine last week as some water pipes continued to test positive for traces of coliform and E. coli after a severe storm last month.

It can take up to seven days for the chlorine to reach the most remote parts of the water system, the department said on Monday. Chlorine is already used as a disinfectant in the Lower Kula and Makawao water systems. Inland customers in Olinda, Lower Kula and Makawao are not affected.

Boiling tap water is recommended for residents of Lepelepe Place, Malamahale Place, Malia Uli Place, Waipoli Road, Naalae Road, Kawehi Place, Polipoli Road, and Lower Kula Road between Naalae and Waipoli Streets.

Drinking water tanks remain at the Fong Store, Ching Store, Ulupalakua Ranch Office, Kula Community Center, Rice Park, and Copp Road on Kula Highway.

The department is also asking affected residents to support the ongoing disinfection efforts by flushing their water fixtures, faucet aerators, water heater tanks and any water filters in and around their homes next week. This should help move chlorinated water through household appliances.

Chlorine will likely be used through January at least, and customers may notice a taste and smell of chlorine in the water, which is normal, the department said. Boiling water speeds up chlorine dissipation and should reduce any chlorine smell or taste.

For kidney dialysis patients, the existing procedures for removing chloramines from the water will remove chlorine, the district said. Those who have been advised to boil water should continue to do so.

For updates and maps of areas with cooking water recommendations, visit

If you have any questions about water quality, call the department laboratory at (808) 270-7550; for general questions, contact Adam Mundy during regular working hours at (808) 270-8046; call (808) 270-7633 for the 24 hour service line.

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