Import & Treatment Process
Potable water, originally treated at the Hammond Indiana Water Filtration Plant, is imported from Chicago Heights. South Chicago Heights has one entry point into our water distribution system. This is the State Street Pump House, where water enters the one million gallon storage tank to be chemically boosted for safety before it is pumped into the water system. The total pumping capacity is 1,800 GPM (2.5 million gallons per day). In 2016, South Chicago Heights pumped a total of 134.49 million gallons of water to its residents, an average of 368,465 gallons per day.
There are three elevated water towers in town. Tower 1, located at the State Street Pump House, has a 500,000 gallon capacity. Tower 2 is located behind 2729 Jackson. This tower has a 125,000 gallon capacity. Tower 3, on Sauk Trail, just west of Butler Avenue, can hold 250,000 gallons of water.
Distribution System - Service Lines
The water distribution system consists of 24.9 miles of 4,6,8,10,12, and 16 inch water main, with 291 operating valves. There are 279 fire hydrants, which are flushed annually between the months of May and September. The department repairs main breaks and service lines throughout the year as needed.
Operators & Water Tests
There are four state licensed water operators employed by the department, maintaining the water system. The operators perform several sample tests to ensure the water is consistently above the state’s standards for potable water, including:
- 2 daily chlorine samples, taken from 2 different sites.
- A monthly bacteria (coliform) test, with 5 samples drawn from different sites.
- A bi-annual disinfectant by-products test, drawn from 2 different sites.
- Lead and copper testing performed every three years.
- Beginning in 2019, South Chicago Heights will begin testing twice a month for certain unregulated contaminants, per the EPA’s UCMR4.