AUSTIN (KXAN) — When Walnut Creek went from crystal clear to a cloudy white overnight people living nearby wanted to know why.

“It is usually beautifully clear water we have quite a bit of fish and turtles,” said Catherine McMullen, who lives next to the creek. “As far as I could see up stream and downstream it was milky white everywhere.”

Grace Howell walks by the creek every morning and was concerned so she reached out to 311 and KXAN.

“That was our biggest concern was just knowing what it is,” Howell said.

After receiving emails through the report it feature, KXAN reached out to the City of Austin Watershed Protection Department to find out more.

They say “with no location information other than Walnut Creek, we can’t be positive that the information provided below pertains to the site you are inquiring about,” but there was a water main break nearby.

“The Watershed Protection Department received a notification of a 16″ broken water main at 12212 Tech Ridge Blvd. last night, December 15, near midnight. We requested Austin Water use dechlorination and valve off the break. The spill is municipal drinking water laden with sediment since water mains are under pressure and stir up soil and road base when they break. We have checked the creek for chlorine and chlorine is not present. We have not seen any signs of a fish kill from the break. Austin Water used dechlorination tablets to remove chlorine from the water while the break was active. They are also removing sediment from the roadway. The sediment that is in the creek cannot be feasibly removed, but will settle out naturally.” – City of Austin Watershed Protection Department

To report concerns regarding creeks, streams and waterways, customers can contact Austin 311. To report potential pollution spills, customers may contact 512-974-2550 available 24-7.