Carroll Gardens

DEP responds after widespread reports of brown water in Carroll Gardens area

Agency investigating, says water is safe to drink

June 4, 2024 Mary Frost
Carroll Gardens.
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CARROLL GARDENS — Crews from the NYC Department of Environmental Protection opened fire hydrants to flush the local water distribution system on Monday after receiving multiple 311 reports about discolored water from west Brooklyn neighborhoods including Carroll Gardens, the Columbia Waterfront District and Red Hook.  

Residents of these neighborhoods who are members of the NextDoor app began posting Monday about seeing brown, cloudy water pouring from their faucets. Comments came in from people living on Sackett, Union, Henry, DeGraw and President streets along with Third Place, Cheever Place and other locations.

Neighbors described their water as “cloudy,” “very brown” and “nasty” — but most said it seemed to be clearing up Tuesday.

“Is it safe to drink?” many asked.

Photo: Numerous residents of Carroll Gardens, the Columbia Waterfront District and Red Hook called 311 to report brown water flowing from their faucets on Monday. NYC DEP is investigating. Graphic: Google Maps

NYC tap water remains safe — though residents should avoid drinking obviously discolored water, a DEP spokesperson told the Brooklyn Eagle via email on Tuesday. 

“If any residents are still seeing discolored water they should run their tap until the water runs clear and cold,” the spokesperson said. “We are investigating the root cause of the discolored water — which is typically related to the disturbance of a water main. We are looking at construction sites in the area and whether a fire hydrant was opened.”

DEP scientists test New York City’s drinking water hundreds of times each day, 365 days a year, he added. “They collect samples from the reservoirs, aqueducts, treatment facilities, and 1,000 street-side sampling stations throughout the five boroughs to ensure the tap water is safe, clean and healthy.”

More info on discolored water can be found on the DEP website.


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