Keysville has grade A water

Published 11:45 am Thursday, June 17, 2021

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The Town of Keysville has been awarded the 2020 Excellence in Waterworks Operations/Performance Gold Level Award by the Virginia Department of Health (VDH), Office of Drinking Water (ODW).

“The achievement is exceptional and highlights the dedication to providing customers with a safe and adequate supply of drinking water,” VDH District Engineer Harry Hughes said.

The water quality achievement comes three years after town officials were hit with complaints from merchants and homeowners about unclear water and violations from the VDH.

In the fall of 2018, town officials began receiving complaints of foul tasting and muddy water initially from residents with several business owners following, but according to Keysville’s Water Plant Executive Chief Officer, Clay Samples, the problem started before then.

“The town was already receiving violations and were already getting muddy water complaints regularly,” Samples said in a June 2019 interview with The Gazette. “The town was not happy with the way things were. They had been receiving notices of violations years prior.”

Due to this, the town hired Samples, who owns and operates Samples Water Monitoring, in September 2018, to oversee and manage Keysville’s water plant operations.

Fast-forward to April 2019’s inspection by the VDH and the Town of Keysville passed all necessary testing.

The following comments were noted by the VDH inspection. “The water system has experienced significant improvement as a result of the new operational staff at the water treatment plant.”

Over the years, town officials have continued to work on the town’s water supply, according to Mayor Steven Morris.

“We are continuing to make strides towards improvement in water quality in Keysville,” Morris said. “This award just fuels the fire of progress as we push forward with well projects and other improvements to our water system.”

The town water supply is drawn from Spring Creek Impoundment, a reservoir that Samples says was built in the ‘60s.

The town of Keysville and has roughly 300 water connections.