After Turbine No. 6 went offline on Wednesday, September 20 at 7:25am, the New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board took twenty minutes to switch over to an alternative electrical supply. Because the power loss resulted in a drop of water pressure to 15 psi, a boil water advisory was issued an hour later that continues today. New Orleans has an aging and cracked infrastructure and without sufficient pressure from inside the pipes, contaminants could leach into the pipes from the substrate.
Marsha Broussard, the City of New Orleans Director of Health, said no one should drink the tap water for the foreseeable future. Bottled or boiled water should be used to drink, cook, brush teeth, wash fruits and vegetables and to make ice. Pets should also be given bottled or boiled water.
Here is a how to:
Boil Water Safely
- Heat water until large bubbles come from the bottom to the top of the pot.
- Let the water boil for at least 1 minute.
- Turn off the heat and let the water cool.
- Store the water in a clean container with a cover.
If you don’t like the taste of boiled water, pour cooled water back and forth from one clean glass into another to add air to the water.
The Louisiana Department of Health has a ten page pdf on Boil Water Advisories that includes lots of helpful information on staying safe during one (link here)