Great Barrington Fire District issues boil water alertMore Info
Update: the order has been lifted. Click here for the full story.
Great Barrington –– Attention Great Barrington Fire District customers. Do not drink your water without boiling it first. A fecal indicator, E. coli, was detected in a water sample collected from the source sample tap on Tuesday April 9, 2019. The District was notified of the result on Wednesday April 10, 2019. Treated water, however, has not tested positive, officials say.
The following notice was issued by the Fire District:
Bring all water to a boil, let it boil for one minute, let it cool before using, or use bottled water. Boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking, making ice, brushing teeth, washing dishes, and food preparation until further notice. Boiling kills bacteria and viruses in the water. Discard ice, juice, formula and food that were prepared using tap water collected on or before Tuesday April 9, 2019.
Fecal indicators are microbes whose presence indicates that the water may be contaminated with human or animal wastes. Microbes in these wastes can cause diarrhea, cramps, nausea, headaches, or other symptoms. They may pose a special health risk for infants, young children, some of the elderly, and people with severely compromised immune systems. If you have specific health concerns, consult your doctor.
The Fire District does provide chlorine disinfectant and had no total coliform or E.coli in samples from the distribution system. The chlorine residual was measured at 0.78 mg/L. The District is conducting more tests and assessments. You will be informed when the boil water order is lifted or when new information is available.
In a brief Edge interview, Walter “Buddy” Atwood III, who chairs the fire district’s Prudential Committee, said the district’s water is tested “almost daily” and the positive result for E.coli was detected in the district’s “raw water” tank, which contains water from the source before it is treated.
Atwood said additional testing was performed today and that results will come back tomorrow. He said the problem might be a false positive from the testing end.
“We hope to have much better news tomorrow,” Atwood said.
For more information, see full Public Notices at Great Barrington Fire District website: www.greatbarringtonwater.org or contact The Great Barrington Fire District at (413) 528-0133.