Severe flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey poses a major threat to the safety of drinking water. During and after flooding, water can become contaminated with microorganisms such as bacteria, sewage, heating oil, agricultural or industrial waste, chemicals and other substances that can cause serious illness. It is important to know what precautions can be taken to protect yourself from the dangers of drinking unsafe water.
As of Thursday August 31 the following water/municipal utility districts have issued unsafe water notifications as follows:
Residents who live in MUD 81 are asked to only use tap water for restroom facility purposes. Do not use the water for showers, baths, laundry or dishwashers. The district encompasses 921 acres south of the intersection of Mason Road and Kingsland Boulevard.
Inverness Forest Subdivision
Residents P&B Water System
UV6 Water System
The SRC Water Supply/Lass Water Company System (Sellers Estates)
What can you do to protect yourself?
1. Watch for boil water alerts from the public water system. Electrical outages can impact the municipal water treatment plant that is disinfecting your water. Boil your water or use bottled water for drinking and cooking until the public water system has lifted the boil water alert and has said the water is safe to drink.
2. Private wells can be affected by flood waters. If you have a private well, you should also boil your water or use bottled water until you are sure the water is safe. Well owners are strongly encouraged to test their systems and seek local water treatment and well water professionals for disinfection of their well as soon as the water recedes.
3. Water treatment systems in your home can become contaminated, as well. Water treatment systems are only effective for potable water (water that is suitable for drinking). Do not drink water treated by these systems without first boiling it. Only resume regular use of the water treatment system once it has been disinfected by a water treatment professional.
4. Contact a local water treatment professional for information on disinfecting your well or water
To ensure destruction of all harmful bacteria and other microbes, water for drinking, cooking, and making ice should be boiled and cooled prior to use.
Disinfect water used for drinking (including for your pets), cooking, brushing teeth, rinsing contact lenses, shaving and making ice. Use one of the following methods:
– Boiling. Boil water for two (2) minutes after it reaches a full rolling boil.
– Chlorine Bleach. Use only unscented liquid chlorine bleach. If water is clear, add 2 drops of bleach per quart of water (8 drops per gallon). If water is cloudy, add 4 drops of bleach per quart of water (16 drops per gallon). Mix well and let stand 30 minutes before using.
– Purification Tablets. These are available at drug stores or camping outlets. Follow the directions on the package. If tablets are over a year old, replace them or throw them away.
– Bottled water. Use only water from bottles that have a sealed top.
Continue disinfecting the water until you are notified the water is safe!
When it is no longer necessary to boil the water, the water system officials will notify you that the water is safe for consumption. Instructions to discontinue boiling will be issued in the same manner as this notice. If you have any questions regarding this matter, please call your local water company.