Bartlesville residents complain of bad tasting water, city hires firm to study

BARTLESVILLE, Okla. - The City of Bartlesville has hired an engineering firm to try to come up with a solution to the city's odd tasting water issue which began several weeks ago.

On Tuesday night, the city council voted to hire Kansas City-based Black & Veatch for $20,000.

The firm will conduct a comprehensive study to figure out how to improve taste and odor problems with the city's water.

"We expect to receive the final report in 90 days. Then that will be the first phase. It will give us the ability to evaluate our options on how to mitigate the problem," said Mike Hall, water director for the City of Bartlesville.

Some water customers refuse to drink the city's water.

"It's kind of like a muddy taste," said Jim Wright. "I just prefer not to drink tap water."

A few restaurants said they added bottled water to their menus in recent weeks because their customers did not like the taste of tap water.

But officials said residents do not have anything to worry about because the water is safe.

"It's safe to drink. It's strictly an aesthetic issue," said Hall.

Hall pointed out that other cities have had this kind of problem long before Bartlesville.

He said the cause is likely due to heavy rainfall from the spring, which along with high temperatures caused algae to grow. The algae released odorous chemicals into the city's water supply.

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