Murray County

April 29, 2013

Authorities investigating Carters Lake water plant break-in

Officials from the FBI, Georgia Bureau of Investigation and Murray County Sheriff’s Office are still investigating a Friday break-in at the Carters Lake Water Treatment Plant in which someone changed the settings for how chlorine and fluoride feed into the system.

That’s according to Chatsworth Water Works manager Steve Smith who said it’s unknown who broke into the plant or why. The FBI became involved because a plant break-in could potentially fall under the realm of homeland security, he said.

The plant will shut down until the Georgia Department of Natural Resources Environmental Protection Division’s bacteriological analysis shows everything is normal, Smith said. Smith said the water company’s own tests show none of the changed levels of chemicals ever made it out of the plant, and the shutdown is only a precaution.

About 400 customers in the Ramhurst area were given a “do not drink” advisory as a precaution, and about 10 to 15 residents near the plant currently have no water at all, Smith said. He said he hopes the plant will be back in operation by the end of the week.

According to a press release from the water works office, the treatment plant provides less than 5 percent of the water used daily in the distribution system, serving mainly customers along Ga. Highway 282 and the Woodring Branch Road area. Affected residents will be notified by phone and radio message once the advisory has been lifted.

Anyone with questions or concerns can contact the Chatsworth Water Works office at (706) 695-3132 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Information is also being posted on

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Murray County