Residents Complain of Smelly Water in Long Beach - NBC 7 San Diego

Residents Complain of Smelly Water in Long Beach



    Residents Complain of Smelly Water

    Long Beach water authorities say they know what's causing the foul odor coming from tap water and they say it won't be going away for several days. Kathy Vara reports for the NBC4 News at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, May 5, 2015. (Published Tuesday, May 5, 2015)

    It looks like water and tastes like water but there's a funny smell coming out of the tap in Long Beach.

    Many residents in Long Beach have noticed the less than pleasant, rotten eggs smell coming from the tap.

    But water officials say there is no reason to worry.

    Locals say otherwise

    "Just rotten sewage, smelly, yuck," says Cindy Wheeler.

    Cindy wheeler says she's not sure what the smell is, or where it's coming from but she's definitely not drinking water from the tap.

    "We thought maybe the washer, but now it’s coming from the tap, so the water - especially when you are brushing your teeth - you don’t want to use that water either," Wheeler says.

    Officials with the Long Beach Water Department say the smell it simply hydrogen sulfide, and it's not at all dangerous.

    "It's naturally occurring, it's not harmful and it will go away in a couple of days," says Tai Tseng, director of operations for the water department.

    Because of the drought, water department officials were importing water, giving the groundwater a chance to replenish. Treatment plant started operations again April 22.

    "We had been letting our aquifer rest in preparation for summer pumping. We are pumping really hard and they are noticing the change," Tseng says.

    Department officials say out of the 90,000 household accounts they handle, only 60 people complained about the smell.

    Officials say the smell should dissipate in the next week.

    "Some of the people who are sensitive can smell it. Those are also the people who are good at tasting wine," Tseng says.