News Release - Boil Order
News Release on Boil Order
We are still under a boil order. If the two tests come back ok on Tuesday and Wednesday, we can remove the boil order.
In a review of this incident, it appears that our team did everything they could do after an unfortunate series of events. The installation of a relief valve on St. Mary’s Drive actually started on Thursday, June 23rd. The valve is being installed as part of our new water tower project. The valve will control pressures in our system after the new water tower is installed and online. We discovered on Friday that one of our valves was not working properly in shutting down the water flow to the construction area. To do the work, we needed to eliminate the water flow to the construction area. We then closed additional valves to isolate the construction zone. This successfully stopped the water flow but unexpectedly dropped the pressures in most of our system below acceptable levels. When the pressure drops below allowable levels, it possibly allows bacteria to enter our system. These bacteria could possibly cause sickness to anyone drinking the water. As a municipal water system, we have a moral and legal responsibility to not allow this to happen. Illinois EPA guidelines require a boil order to be issued immediately. This is what we did. We tested the water this morning. That is the earliest that a lab was available for testing. We will have that result tomorrow. Assuming that test is good, we will send the second test to them tomorrow and then we will have that result on Wednesday. We hope that the two tests both come back clean and then we can lift the boil order.
When these kinds of things happen, we always see what we could have done to prevent the issue. This is no reflection on our people but a sincere attempt to improve. I don’t see any faults with what our people did. We do plan to do these types of projects earlier in the week in the future. That will possibly give us more time to solve things before the weekend. We will try to improve our communications between departments so that the office staff can better understand the problem and provide timely information to the public. We will be clearer with the press so that the information presented to the public accurately reflects the situation.