Boil Water Order Extended through Sunday

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Saturday, August 6, 2016, 6:03 pm
Alice Dreger


The City of East Lansing expects that it will be at least this Sunday evening before residents of East Lansing and Meridian Township get word that they can stop boiling drinking water. A “boil water alert” was issued yesterday by the East Lansing Meridian Water and Sewer Authority and has remained in effect since.

The City says that “the next update is anticipated at approximately 5 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 7.” City officials met today with officials from the Water and Sewer Authority, Meridian Township, and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ).

According to the latest press release from the City of East Lansing, “Initial indications show that the East Lansing Meridian Water and Sewer Authority’s (ELMWSA) water samples are negative for harmful bacteria; however, a second set of sample testing is required to confirm the initial results. Definitive results of these tests will be available in approximately 24 hours.” Hence the delay until tomorrow at 5 p.m. for further information.

WILX has reported that the problem was caused “after an employee back washed a filter still in service” at the water filtration plant.

Residents subject to the alert (see map) are advised that “boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking, making ice, washing dishes, brushing teeth, and preparing food until further notice.”

Residents need to bring tap water to a rolling boil, boil it for one minute, and cool before using. Residents can also use commercially-bottle water.

Eli’s Managing Editor Ann Nichols contacted DEQ employee Amy Lachance yesterday to ask about risk from external contact with tap water that has not been boiled. According to Lachance, there is no risk from external contact. If that was a concern, she says, the order would have been a “No Contact” order.

Lachance declined to answer the question of whether to water pets with water that has not been boiled, and suggested asking your veterinarian if you have a concern. (Obviously water that is boiled should be fully cooled before offering it to a pet.)


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