Update: The boil water advisory has been lifted for all of DeKalb County.
The Gist: DeKalb County is under a boil water advisory, and it isn’t just for parts of the county. The entire county should be boiling water until the advisory is lifted.
What happened?: Heavy thunderstorms affecting Scott Candler Water Treatment Plant in north DeKalb County led to power outages at approximately 10:40 p.m., Sept. 13, and 2:36 a.m., Sept. 14.
While backup power generators were able to restore power to the facility within 3 minutes, the county is issuing the advisory out of “an abundance of caution” because water pressure at the facility briefly dropped below the minimum requirements for the system.
Details: In order to protect the public from a potential health hazard, all customers that have experienced water outages and/or low water pressure are advised to boil all water prior to use for drinking, cooking, or preparing baby food. The water should be boiled for at least one minute after reaching a rolling boil.
It is not necessary to boil tap water used for other household purposes, such as showering, laundry, or bathing. Adults, teens, and older children can wash, bathe, or shower; however, they should avoid swallowing the water. Toddlers and infants should be sponge-bathed.
How long will the advisory last?: That isn’t easy to predict. Water quality has to be tested and approved by the Environmental Protection Division before the advisory can be lifted.
Customers should continue to boil their water until they are notified that the water system has been restored to full operation, and that the microbiological quality of the water in the distribution system is safe for human consumption.
What about the water at DeKalb Schools?: The DeKalb school system released a statement Saturday. According to the statement, the school system has ensured adequate drinking water for weekend activities.
“Our health and safety of our students and staff are a top priority. We will closely monitor this situation and look into alternative solutions to ensure the best interest of our students, including a potential school closure if needed,” said Superintendent/CEO R. Stephen Green.
The school system will continue to monitor the situation closely with the DeKalb County Department of Watershed Management for updates and will communicate any decisions for school operations for Monday.