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MDC: Reservoirs in West Hartford Remain Open, Warning Regarding Flushing Wipes

West Hartford Reservoir No. 1. Courtesy of MDC (we-ha.com)

The Metropolitan District Commission has issued an update regarding its outdoor recreation areas, as well as a warning regarding flushing wipes and other items.

By Ronni Newton

The Metropolitan District Commission (MDC) reservoir properties are among the area’s favorite spots for outdoor recreation, and during this time when gyms and other facilities are closed, thousands have been flocking to the West Hartford Reservoir on Farmington Avenue and Reservoir No. 6 to walk, run, or bike.

The MDC plans to keep those properties open to the public, but urges people to heed parking restrictions. Lots will close when they are full, in order to ensure that the areas do not become overcrowded and that MDC has access to treatment plants on the properties.

The number of pedestrians has not been specifically limited, nor has the number of bicyclists (bikes are not permitted at Reservoir No. 6, but that rule is not new) the release states, and that will not happen “unless we experience public safety concerns” and staff is unable to properly respond to needs.

In a news release, the MDC issued the following statement: “The MDC public parking capacity is finite and therefore visitors will be limited based on available designated parking spaces at its recreational areas located at the West Hartford Reservoir on Farmington Avenue and Reservoir # 6 in Bloomfield. In order for MDC’s staff to be able to manage and support public safety needs while recreating, MDC must have unrestricted access to the Red Loop and treatment plant through the parking areas. A variable messaging sign is installed outside the West Hartford location stating that “Parking is limited, and that access will be closed when the lot is full.”

The MDC issued another coronavirus-related message, reminding customers about what should and should not be flushed down toilets.

Amid fear of the COVID-19 pandemic leading to lockdowns and shortages of critical food and personal care items, toilet paper supplies have been depleted on store shelves, leading some people to utilize substitute materials.

“MDC is reminding customers to not flush disinfectant wipes (or any type of wipes), paper towels, facial tissue or materials other than toilet paper down your toilet as they are not designed to break down in the wastewater treatment process,” the release states. “Flushing these items can cause additional maintenance issues at MDC facilities and more importantly potentially clog your homes lateral and cause sewer backups in surrounding homes and neighborhood streets.”

The MDC is continuing to provide updates and protocols “to keep our employees and customers safe, which in turn will provide the ability to provide uninterrupted drinking water and wastewater services to more than 400,000 residents of the Hartford Region.”

Further updates can be found on the MDC website’s COVID-19 information page.

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