PONCHATOULA - Emotions ran high at a council meeting Monday night as residents were filled with questions and concerns about brown water coming out of their taps at various times.

Several residents reported the brown water, which can collect in tubs and can be seen in drinking water out of the tap.

“It’s brown and you can’t see through it – very dense,” said Sharon Lowery. “If you let it out, it causes a dirt, oily substance. It’s disgusting. Nobody wants to get in it to take a shower or drink it. We don’t know what to do.”

Just a little way away from Lowry’s home, Tonya Houp’s white clothes are getting darker.

“This isn’t safe, to me, to drink,” Houp said. “It’s certainly ruining my clothes.”

At the council meeting, some residents, with tears in their eyes, said they were frustrated.

Mayor Robert Zabbia said the city has been working for some time to fix the problem.

“When it really began to show itself, back in March, we took our main water tower out of service,” Zabbia said. “When we had all of the wells tested, our new Veterans well showed traces of manganese, so our experts recommended that we put a sequestering agent on our well, which we did.”

The city has ordered new equipment and is waiting on approval from DHH to add the agents to their water system.

“We are working on it,” Zabbia assured. “If you have brown water, flush your line.”

Until it’s fixed, Zabbia is encouraging people to call the government and let them know about the issues.

Attorney Parker Layrisson said the people who live in Ponchatoula are tired of waiting.

“People don’t trust city hall. They know the mayor won’t take action, so they won’t take time to tell them they have problems.”