County officials are preparing to hand out water supplies to residents of seven Metro Detroit communities affected by the cooking advice first issued Saturday.
23 communities in Metro Detroit were originally affected, but further testing allowed the advisory to be lifted in most areas.
Yet seven communities are still urged to boil water: the village of Almont, Bruce Township, Burtchville Township, Imlay City, City of Rochester, Shelby Township, Washington Township, as well as a company in Greenwood and an industrial park in Romeo. That includes about 133,000 inhabitants.
Residents are urged not to drink the water without boiling it first. Those who want to consume the water should boil it for at least a minute and then let it cool before use. This advice is for drinking, making ice cream, washing dishes, brushing teeth and preparing food until further notice.
Oakland and Macomb counties are working to distribute water supplies to residents as the timeline for repairs and testing is estimated to be 2-4 weeks.
Oakland County officials told Local 4: “Today we received 55 pallets of water from the state of Michigan and 19 pallets of water from Meijer Corporation. Oakland County is the distribution center for region two in the north, including Macomb and Saint Clair Counties. Michigan Task Force One responded today to the Oakland County warehouse, where they collected eight pallets of water for Macomb County. Oakland County will continue to distribute water to Macomb and Saint Clair County for the next two weeks or until the water main is repaired. We also distributed 8 pallets of water to the City of Rochester yesterday, which were distributed to residents through the fire service.”
Macomb County confirmed they have received water supplies and told Local 4: “We are going to make that available to the most vulnerable population groups first, and we will do that in the coming days in collaboration with the local communities.”
Water supplies will likely be distributed at local fire stations and town halls. More information on how and where to collect water will be offered on Monday.
Officials say crews have identified the location of a leak in a 120-inch water transmission line that distributes ready drinking water from a water treatment plant in Lake Huron. According to Water Authority of the Great Lakes, an estimated 935,000 people were affected on Saturday morning. Police are investigating the cause of the water main break.
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Since Sunday, crews have isolated the breach and have begun to remove water from the site to prepare the area for repairs. According to GLWA, the estimated time frame for repairs and water quality testing is two weeks.
The advice for boiling water will remain in effect until the results of the sampling verify that the water is safe to drink.
Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer activated the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) at 4 p.m. Saturday to respond to the ongoing water supply interruption.
GLWA officials have been working to repair the broken water main. When a water system loses pressure, there is a risk of bacterial contamination. As a result, precautions have been taken.
GLWA states that crews will open emergency connections to other pipes once the leak is isolated to restore power to those affected.
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