(Greene County, Va.) - The Virginia Department of Health’s Blue Ridge Health District, in conjunction with the County of Greene and Mountain Lakes Water Company, is advising residents to use boiled tap water or bottled water for drinking and cooking purposes as a safety precaution. Failure to follow this advisory could result in stomach or intestinal illness. This precaution is necessary due to a service interruption and complete loss of water pressure that began on or about the morning of November 11, 2023, and the possibility of the presence of E. coli bacteria from infiltration into the distribution system. The Virginia Department of Health was notified of the water pressure issues on November 13, 2023.
*E. coli are bacteria whose presence indicates that the water may be contaminated with human or animal wastes. Human pathogens in these wastes can cause short-term effects, such as diarrhea, cramps, nausea, headaches, or other symptoms. They may pose a greater health risk for infants, young children, the elderly, and people with severely-compromised immune systems.*
DO NOT DRINK TAP WATER WITHOUT BOILING IT FIRST
Boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking, beverage and food preparation, making ice, bathing, and brushing teeth until further notice. Boiling kills bacteria and other organisms in the water and is the preferred method to assure that tap water is safe to drink. Bring all tap water to a rolling boil, let it boil for one minute, and let it cool before using. Alternatively, use bottled water.
If you cannot boil your tap water…
- An alternative method of purification for residents that do not have gas or electricity available is to use liquid household bleach to disinfect water. The bleach product should be recently purchased, free of additives and scents, and contain a hypochlorite solution of at least 5.25%. Public health officials recommend adding 8 drops of bleach (about ¼ teaspoon) to each gallon of water. The water should be stirred and allowed to stand for at least 30 minutes before use.
- Water purification tablets may also be used by following the manufacturer’s instructions.
It is anticipated the problem will be resolved within one week. However, due to repairs and sample verification, it may be longer. Once the Boil Water Advisory has been lifted, residents will be notified through the same methods of communication used to notify of the advisory.
For more information, please contact the Mountain Lakes Water Company at 434-985-7504 or 434-760-2172. For Frequently Asked Questions about Boiling Water, visit the Virginia Department of Health website. For health-related questions, contact the Virginia Department of Health Call Center at 877-829-4682, OPTION 2. The prompt will identify OPTION 2 as “COVID-19 related items.” While this issue is not related to COVID-19, a specialized team within this division has been set up to field calls regarding this specific situation. The call center is available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
*Please share this information with others who drink this water, especially those who may not have received this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses). You can do this by posting this notice in a public place or distributing copies by hand or mail.*
State Water System ID#: 2079590 Date of Notice: November 13, 2023