DES MOINES, Iowa — Watching recent floods wipe out one of Mississippi’s water treatment plants reminds Iowans of severe flooding in the 90s that left many Des Moines residents without safe water for weeks.
Torrential rains and flooding across Mississippi and a leak in an ammonia tank resulted in the O.B Curtis Water Treatment Plant in Jackson, Mississippi to fail, leaving thousands of residents without safe drinking water.
Des Moines residents know all too well what having a nonfunctional water treatment plant is like. Due to severe flooding in 1993 the Des Moines Water Works treatment plant was forced to close. The closure left thousands of residents without safe drinking water for nearly three weeks.
Clean up of the floods lasted for months and the damages were estimated at 3.2 billion dollars.
Des Moines Water Works said significant improvements have been made to prevent another flooding incident like the one in 1993 from happening again.
“You rarely learn from a positive experience and you always learn from a challenging experience,” Ted Corrigan, CEO and general manager at Des Moines Water Works, said.
Advancements in water monitoring, raising the levees around the system, and the addition of floodgates have been implemented.