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Families dealing with brown tap water in Kingwood

KINGWOOD, Texas – People across the Kingwood area said they've been seeing dirty water in their sinks and bathtubs for weeks, and in some cases months.

"It looked like a chocolate water fountain," Elizabeth Bustillo, a Kingwood resident who contacted KPRC 2 to look into the problem, said. "I have families in other countries that have cleaner water than we do."

Bustillo has called North Kingwood Forest her home for the last two years, but on Monday she noticed her water's brown color. She said all three of her kids who use the water became sick.

"They were sick last week. It was a mysterious stomach virus. It was the worst that they've ever had," Bustillo said.

Valerie Johnson knows exactly what Bustillo is talking about. She said she doesn't drink the water but she feeds it to her animals.

"I'm just worried about the color. There's probably a lot of sediment. I'm not interested in giving that to my animals," Johnson said.

City Council Member Dave Martin has heard the outcry and responded to residents on Facebook, writing, "According to Severn Trent's Assistant Manager, Graham Beisel, a contractor has been onsite trying to isolate fire hydrants which is contributing to the issue. Due to the calcium buildup in the lines, sediment is working its way through the system causing residents to see brown water coming from their faucets. We have been told that crews are in route now to flush the lines, and are hopeful that this will be a long term solution to providing clear water. At this time, the water is safe to drink, bathe with as well as to cook with and there is no need to boil."

Despite that, Bustillo and others are not satisfied.

"As a matter of fact, I kind of do want the city of Houston to test the water for me. I want to know what's in our water," Bustillo said.

Martin also wrote that concerned citizens who see water discoloration should call the city's 311 help line or his office at 832-393-3008.

Click here for more information about the issue.