ATLANTIC CITY — Mayor Marty Small Sr., and Atlantic City Municipal Utility Authority officials said Saturday that they expect the Boil Water Advisory to be resolved by the end of the weekend.
“The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection was satisfied with the early morning fire hydrant flushing of the system, which allowed the ACMUA to begin testing,” Small said in a prepared statement. “Turnaround time for sample results is 18 hours.”
Small held an afternoon news conference flanked by members of the City’s Health and Human Services department and Office of Emergency Management along with representatives from the ACMUA.
More than 500 cases of bottled water were made available to Atlantic City residents on Saturday afternoon on a first come, first served basis, the statement said. Residents who live between Maine Avenue and the Atlantic City Expressway can pick up the water at the Fire Station located at Maryland and Atlantic avenues. Residents who live between the Atlantic City Expressway and Jackson Avenue can pick up water at the Fire Station located at California and Atlantic avenues. Cases of water are being brought to residents living in senior living facilities.
The ACMUA recently discovered a problem and is working diligently to correct the issues. The City’s Health and Human Services Environmental Health Division recommends bringing boiled tap water to 112 degrees.
“We routinely monitor your water at the treatment plant for turbidity (cloudiness). This tells us whether we are effectively filtering the water supply to remove organic matter and possible disease-causing organisms,” the ACMUA said Friday in a prepared statement.
A water sample taken on Friday showed turbidity levels of 2.5 nephelometric turbidity units at the Individual Filter Effluent which is above the standard of one nephelometric turbidity unit, the statement said.
“The Combined Filter Effluent was not operational at the time of the Individual Filter Effluent Exceedance. Because of the high levels of turbidity, there is an increased chance that the water may contain disease-causing organisms,” the Friday statement said.
What should I do? What does this mean?
• DO NOT DRINK THE WATER WITHOUT BOILING IT FIRST. Bring all water to a boil, let it boil for one minute, and 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 other organisms in the water.
• *Turbidity has no health effects. However, turbidity can interfere with disinfection and provide a medium for microbial growth. Turbidity may indicate the presence of disease-causing organisms. These organisms include bacteria, viruses, and parasites, which can cause symptoms such as nausea, cramps, diarrhea, and associated headaches.
• The symptoms above are not caused only by organisms in drinking water. If you experience any of these symptoms and they persist, you may want to seek medical advice. People at increased risk should seek advice from their health care providers about drinking this water.
What is being done?
We will be flushing the system and sampling for total coliform. We will inform you when turbidity returns to appropriate levels and when you no longer need to boil your water.
General guidelines on ways to lessen the risk of infection by microbes are available from the EPA Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 1-800-426-4791.
“The Boil Water Advisory remains in effect at this time,” according to a prepared statement issued by the City of Atlantic City on Saturday. “Officials, however, are optimistic it will be lifted before the end of the weekend.”
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