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Shortage of disinfecting chemical could affect the city's drinking water

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Posted at 3:49 PM, Jan 31, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-01 15:05:42-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The city of Corpus Christi is facing a permanganate shortage.

A chemical disinfectant, permanganate is used by the city to treat drinking water.

At Tuesday's city council meeting, city manager Peter Zanoni told council members that the city has about a 12 day supply left of the chemical.

The reason for the shortage is an explosion and fire that happened Jan. 11 in Lasalle, Illinois. The fire destroyed the Carus plant, a chemical facility that was the only source of permanganate in the U.S.

City manager Peter Zanoni saids once the city's current supply of permanganate runs out, water customers may notice an earthy, musty taste and smell in their tap water. The water may also be not as clear.

Zanoni said that the water will still be safe to drink and not everyone may notice a change in taste or smell.

Carus has told the city that it could be 90 days before they can resume supplying us with permanganate.

In the meantime, the city manager says they will try to find an overseas source of the disinfectant. Other cities across the country are also looking for this chemical, there may be some competition for a new source.