Water Treatment/Distribution

Water Treatment & Distribution

towerWe welcome questions and comments of any kind.  We welcome complaints of any kind.  We want to know if any customer is unsatisfied with water quality.

Contact Information:
Please contact Scott Flater, Water Treatment Supervisor @ 620-223-5160
Or please contact Michael Mix, Utility Director @ 620-223-5160
For billing questions please call Utility office at City Hall @ 620-223-8133
For distribution, water leaks or meter issues please contact Bill Lemke @ 620-223-8125

Common Q & A

How do I read my meter, or check for leak?
The city has installed meters that are capable of being read though radio transmission rather than manually for billing purposes. However you can still read the meters manually and check for leaks. Please see the guide for reading your water meter (Download Guide). These meters also have the ability to store water usage data for the last 96 days. If you believe you have had a leak, or have questions about your water usage this data can be retrieved and provided to you upon request at no charge. 

Where can I get bulk water?
The City of Fort Scott operates a coin operated water supply filling station at 758 S. Wilson St. The filling station or "water crane" as it is called by many locals. The water on site is potable (that is drinking water), as it is connected directly to the distribution system. Attached to the water crane hose is a permanent air gap that prevents cross-connections by not allowing the hose to enter a water tank.
What happens if I have a water leak?
The customer is responsible for plumbing from the customer side of the water meter on, toward the house.  The Water Utility is responsible for water lines from the treatment plant to the meter.  If the leak is on customer side, please call a local plumber.  If the leak is on the utility side, please report it to the treatment plant 223-5160, right away.

Where can I see analysis data for my tap water?

• A Consumer Confidence Report (CCR) is an annual water quality report delivered by community water systems (CWSs) to their customers. The CCR includes information on source water, the levels of detected contaminants, and compliance with drinking water rules. To find the latest CCR from the City of Fort Scott please follow this link.


• Kansas Department of Health and Environment
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) is the department within the State of Kansas that has primacy for enforcement of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) regulations. The Public Water Supply Section of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment's Bureau of Water is charged with regulating all public water supply systems in the state to ensure safe drinking water. The section oversees more than 1,000 public water supply systems including municipalities, rural water districts, and privately owned systems. These systems may serve small communities of several families or cities of more than 300,000 persons. You can go to the KDHE website by clicking here http://www.kdheks.gov/water/index.html .


• Ask a Professional
You can always call the water plant (620-223-5160) with specific questions.  If we don't know the answer we will find out and get back to you.

What does the Water Distribution crew do?
The Water Distribution crew maintains water infrastructure with in the City Right of Way, which is typically from the middle of the street, alley, or easement to the back of the sidewalk or 8 to 10 feet from the edge of the pavement if there is no sidewalk. The property owner is responsible for the maintenance of water service after the curb box or meter pit.

The water crew maintains the City’s water infrastructure regularly to ensure all operations are fully functional at all times. Water mains are flushed annually to remove sediment and maintain water quality. Water mains and services are located and marked when construction is scheduled. New services are installed generally up to 2 inch. Valves, meter pits, fire hydrants, and flushing hydrants are maintained to work properly. In the instance of a water main break or service leak, water service may need to be shut of temporally while repairs are made. Water concerns regarding pressure, flow, odor, or color are investigated by the water crew. Often these concerns can be related to nearby construction, hydrant flushing, or water main break/leak.

What Causes Water Main Breaks?
Water mains and services can suffer a break at any time and for a variety of reasons, such as freezing and thawing, old age, ground shift, construction and maintenance events, etc.

How do I know if a main break has occurred?
Symptoms can be loss of water pressure and flow, color in the water, or sediment, standing or running water in the street, alley, or easement.

What is a Cross Connection/Backflow?
Cross Connection between water supplies and non potable sources of contamination represent one of the most significant threats to health in the water industry.

Backflow is the reversal of water from it intended direction due to a pressure differential. It Can occur anywhere that has a potential of cross connection in a water system, including; dishwashers, garbage disposals, toilets, shower heads, faucets, pools, lawn irrigation, fountains, hoses, and more.

What does the City do about Cross Connection/Backflow?
The City has a Cross Connection Program that is designed to maintain the standards of water potability by establishing rules and procedures to control potential cross connection and prevent contamination of public drinking water by the installation and maintenance of approved backflow devices. For more information: See the Municipal Codes or download (Cross Connection Control Manual).

How does a water treatment plant work?
Here is the link to a short video, but better yet, we would love to give you  a tour! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tuYB8nMFxQA  Call 223-5160 to arrange a tour.

The Fort Scott water works has been providing water since 1883. The current location of the treatment plant at Burke St. and Park Ave. treats an average of 2.6 million gallons of water a day. The water plant serves not only the city but the most of Bourbon County.

Our primary water source for the treatment plant is the Marmaton River, however the city is also able to draw water from Rock Creek Lake, Lake Fort Scott, and Cedar Creek Lake if needed.  This water is pumped to the treatment plant where it is treated by enhanced coagulation (a settling process), ozonation (an extremely powerful disinfectant), it is filtered, and finally chloramines are added to ensure the water remains disinfected as it travels throughout the distribution system.

The Fort Scott Water Treatment Plant is one of only five ozone plants in Kansas.  This proves the city’s commitment to excellence in being willing to invest in this cutting-edge technology.

The treated water is of excellent quality that meets and exceeds all state and federal standards, which grow ever growing more stringent.  Rest assured that your tap water is quality and healthy. All water plant personnel possess a state certification for operating a treatment plant or are in the process of training for certification.
treatmentOur Mission:
To serve our community by providing the best quality water feasible.
To maintain all current assets while constantly preparing for the future.
To continually seek creative ways to better our services.
To build a reputation for quality, professionalism, excellence, and service.

Another resource for water related questions:
For common questions  and easy to understand answers on nearly any aspect of water, please follow the link to view the book “Plain Talk about Drinking Water” by Dr. James M. Symons