City of Minot addresses letter sent out regarding water testing

Minot water treatment plant
Minot water treatment plant(KMOT)
Published: Jan. 18, 2023 at 8:37 PM CST
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MINOT, N.D. (KMOT) – A letter sent out to some city of Minot residents regarding a recent testing oversight has led to an uptick in calls to the Water Treatment Plant, but city officials say there’s no immediate cause for concern.

The letter explains that the city did not collect the correct source water sample for testing during a retest of the water supply.

Jason Sorenson, the Assistant Public Works Director, said samples are sent in for what’s known as a coliform test, which tests the presence of E. coli.

He said a sample sent to First District Health Unit tested positive, but noted that the tests are very sensitive, and can be triggered just by someone putting their finger on it.

Sorenson said the Department of Environmental Quality notified the city to resample the location that failed, as well as upstream and downstream.

However, he said a sample collector pulled from the wrong source water location, and by the time they found out, they had missed their window to test.

“All the retests came back negative, so we have a pretty high degree of confidence that the water was never in any danger, it was just an oversight on a sample,” said Sorenson.

The letter indicates that, although the sample was outside of the allotted time frame, they did test negative for E. coli.

The letter also details that the city is increasing employee training and supervision to make sure tests are done correctly.

Derek Hackett, a spokesperson for the city, said the misstep occurred in November, and they have conducted hundreds of tests since then.

Anyone with questions should contact Mark Paddock, Superintendent of the Minot Water Treatment Plant, at (701) 857-4761.

Important information about your drinking water letter
Important information about your drinking water letter(City of Minot)