Fostoria resident files complaint with EPA over bad taste, smell of city’s water

Published: Sep. 25, 2023 at 8:15 PM EDT
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FOSTORIA, Ohio (WTVG) - A Fostoria man is so fed up with the bad smelling water tasting like dirt that he filed a complaint with the Environmental Protection Agency.

City leaders are still working to filter out the bad taste and the smell in Fostoria’s water. The city is using a quarter of a million dollars in American Rescue funding to fix the aging water infrastructure.

The water was supposed to taste different by April but Brandon Preble says that’s not the case.

“It’s like a combination of dirt and mold, that’s really what it tastes and smells like,” said Preble.

Preble got so fed up with the problem that he filed a complaint with the EPA.

“After the EPA complaint, there was, immediately the next day and returned email from Fostoria water department,” said Preble. “Everything they told me in that email was what they’re doing and what needs to be done. “They said it would be done by April 2023 so, at this point, it just feels like empty promises,” said Preble.

The water superintendent sent an email to Preble saying the plant staff is doing everything possible to fix the problem. 13 Action News caught up with Fostoria’s mayor to ask him about the water.

“In the same time, we were in transition from the old system to the new PAC feed system that is going to work much better. So there was the return of those taste and odor issues,” said Mayor Eric Keckler. “So, our new PAC system is in line. We have to change out four filters in the water plant itself. All those parts are in or just about in. So, we will be able to change those out and hopefully get back to normal, " said Mayor Eric Keckler.       

Last year, the EPA required the city to build this temporary Powered-Activated Carbon system, also known as a PAC feed, to prove the city could fix the problem.           The mayor blames some of the unpleasant taste on lake turnover in the reservoir.

“So that’s not helping at all but once we can get caught up with a new PAC feed system and change those filters out, we should be back good shape again,” said the mayor.          

The mayor hopes resident will see a difference in the next couple weeks.

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