Boil water order: What you need to know

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May 1, 2010, 7:26 pm
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(NECN) - A boil water order was issued for 30 communities Saturday after a major aqueduct leak in Weston, Mass. potentially tainted the water running to its east.

Dr. Anita Barry of the Boston Public Health Commission outlined the steps for properly boiling water for consumption:

Boil water for one minute (a rolling bubbling)
Allow it to cool in a covered container

The water is safe for bathing and flushing, but not for consumption.  It is NOT safe for:

Brushing teeth
Washing salad greens
Making ice cubes
Mixing baby formula

In those instances, boiled or bottled water should be used.

Dr. Barry stressed that the boiled water order has been put in place because of the breach -- not due to a known bacteria in the water.  She said the general risk in drinking contaminated water is diarrhea and abdominal cramps.

She said the major concern, generally, rests with young children, vulnerable people and the elderly.

The MSPCA has issued a statement calling for pet owners to take the same cautions when giving pets water.


MassDEP's boil water order facts

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