Water In Alamosa Will Only Be Suitable For Flushing Toilets

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Starting Tuesday morning, water in the town of Alamosa will only be suitable for flushing toilets.

Levels of chlorine in the city's water will be twice the amount found in swimming pools starting as city water officials begin the treatment for salmonella contamination.

Monday, residents scrambled to get fresh water.

Gallon after gallon of fresh water was moved from tankers to resident's personal containers as final preparations for Tuesday's big flush continued.

"Flushing an entire system, I think, is probably almost unheard of to the extent we're doing it," says Assistant City Manager Don Koskelin.

The first stage will add massive amounts of chlorine to the water to kill the bacteria living in the system.

Tankers from across the state, including Colorado Springs, have rolled into town to provide water for the community.

The second stage of the chlorination process will decrease the amount of chlorine used, causing a change in water restrictions.

"Once we get down to 10 parts per million, we'll probably loosen those restrictions a little bit depending on what we find," says Koskelin.

Twenty-four hours after stage two, the plan is to reduce the chlorine to regular drinking water levels again.

The whole process will take about 10 to 14 days.

The city of Alamosa is building a new water treatment plant that's scheduled to open by June.