Germantown mayor: Water tests did not come back with ‘all-clear’

By , Daily Memphian Updated: July 25, 2023 11:36 AM CT | Published: July 24, 2023 6:55 PM CT

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On the fifth’s day of the city’s water crisis, Germantown Mayor Mike Palazzolo gave new updates.

“Today’s battery of tests did not come back positive in the sense we couldn’t get an all-clear,” Palazzolo said. “We will continue to be under the no drink, no bathe, only flush with our potable (drinking) water here in Germantown. We will continue the process of flushing the system and opening hydrants while continuing to test.” 

Germantown allows water usage for some residents

The city announced the leak on Thursday, July 20, and declared a State of Emergency.

Some residents — those east of Forest Hill-Irene Road — can use the municipal water because their water is from the Johnson Road water plant, farther from the fuel leakage site.

As reported earlier, the city traced the problem to a generator during a power outage leaking diesel fuel at the Southern Avenue water plant. City officials said they self-reported the leak to the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation and the Shelby County Health Department.

An estimated 100 gallons of fuel leaked into 4.2 million gallons of the water supply.

Palazzolo also clarified the instructions for the flushing directions for those east of Forest Hill-Irene Road. Those directions call for residents to call officials if they smell diesel while they conduct their flush tests.

“As we give flushing instructions, it would be natural to think this through,” he said. “As the water is being flushed through the system and leaves the system, it could be that residue leaves, produces odor, which is a positive sign that it’s leaving. We’ve asked our residents to report that so we can send one of the crews there to evaluate the system more closely.”


Germantown Mike Palazzolo Shelby County
Kambui Bomani

Kambui Bomani

Kambui Bomani is the general assignment and breaking news reporter for The Daily Memphian. He is a graduate of Jackson State University’s multimedia journalism program and earned a master’s degree in digital journalism from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School. His work has been published in Pro Football Focus, The Southside Stand, HBCU Legends, FanSided and Wisconsin Sports Heroics.


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