Troy boil water alert expected to continue until Tuesday evening

People in northwest Troy are still under a boil water advisory after a water main break over the weekend.

After reports that some stores were running low, the city is trying to help families get the bottled water they need. Meanwhile, many local businesses have been forced to close.

"I don't know if we'll ever know what caused it, but old pipes," said Capt. Bob Redmond, Troy police. "The pipes are old underground, they can't last forever. This happened to be a really, really big one. It's a big mess." 

The boil water alert impacting northwest Troy is expected to continue until at least Tuesday

A water distribution center for impacted Troy residents will be open from 6 p.m.
through 9 p.m. Monday night at Firefighters Park, 1800 W. Square Lake Road, Troy, MI 48098.

The incident began when a large water main broke on South Boulevard west of Dequindre.
The cause of the break is still being investigated. The water main is owned and operated by
the Great Lakes Water Authority (GLWA).

The GLWA is testing water from the impacted area today. We are expecting results from the
most recent test tomorrow. The boil water alert will be lifted once the water has been
determined to be safe for consumption. It is anticipated that this will occur tomorrow

Updates will be posted at as well as on the Facebook and Twitter
accounts associated with both the Police Department and the City of Troy. Residents can also
called 248.524.3384, a 24 hour hotline established for this incident.

Impacted residents over 60 years old in need of a home delivered meal can contact Meals on
Wheels at 248-689-0001. Homebound individuals in the impacted area can contact
248.524.3384 for a delivery of water.

The water distribution center will also be open tomorrow, Tuesday, November 15 from 8 a.m.
until 6 p.m. Additional hours, if needed, will be posted to the City website and social media
sites listed above.

The attached map depicts the areas impacted by the boil water alert. Also attached is
information from Oakland County related to Boiling Water.

information from Oakland County related to Boiling Water.

1. When is it safe to cook, wash, drink and clean with the water?
After the boil water advisory has been lifted. You can wash and clean with the water under a boil water notice (see #2below) without boiling it first.

2. Is it safe to shower under a boil water advisory?
Yes, unless you have an open wound, etc. that could let bacteria into your body.

3. Is it safe to brush your teeth under a boil water advisory?
You should use boiled water.

4. Is it safe to wash the dishes in a dishwasher or by hand under a boil water advisory?
Use heat dry in the dishwasher, pour hot boiled water over hand washed.

5. How long should you boil the water?
The water should reach a rolling boil and boil for 5 minutes.

6. Do you have to let it stand after you boil the water, why?
You should let it stand for about 15 minutes to minimize the chance of burning yourself.

7. Why is the water milky or discolored? What should you do to get rid of the discoloring? Is it safe to use this water?

If the water is a milky/cloudy color and clears in a few minutes when put it in a glass (from the bottom up), then it is air in water and is safe to drink. You can help by flushing your lines, starting with the outside hose closest to where the service line enters your home. Flush outside about 15 minutes, then flush your inside faucets, etc. for a few minutes each.

8. Community Wells (water milky or discolored) ] what should you do to get rid of the discoloring? Is it safe to use this water (cook, wash, drink, etc.)?

For cloudy/milky color, see #7. If the water is yellow, orange, red or brown, it may be due to iron in the well water. Iron is not a health concern in well water but the discoloration is a nuisance problem. If you have a softener or filter, bypass it, then check the color. If it is clear, then you should follow equipment maintenance requirements (check your salt level, regenerate your softener, clean or replace filter, etc.).

If the bypassed water is discolored, it may be due to increased velocity in the water mains (lots of water sprinkling, running a lot of water in the home by clothes washing/dish washing/shower at the same time or system fire hydrant use). Check and flush your outside hose closest to where the service line enters your home, to try and clear water color. If a hydrant was used it may take a day to settle down. You can contact the Bill Services Department to schedule a low pressure service line flush at 248-858-1110 if the discoloring persists.

9. When trying to flush your water lines, does it matter if you are running the inside taps or the outside? Should you drain your hot water heater?

See #7 for flushing. You do not need to drain your hot water heater for a "precautionary boil water advisory" as you shouldn't drink or cook with water drawn from your hot water tap.

10. What can be done when there is air in the water lines?

See #7.

11. Are there any precautions to take when you have low water pressure?

No, but put some away in case you lose all water pressure.

12. Does the use of bleach purify your water? How much bleach? (Under a boil water notice, can you use bleach to disinfect your water without boiling it first)?

Yes, when boiling is not practical, chemical disinfection should be used. You can use bleach to disinfect drinking water.

See below for Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommendations:

Chlorine Bleach: Common household bleach contains a chlorine compound that will disinfect water.
The procedure to be followed is usually written on the label. When the necessary procedure is not given, find the percentage of available chlorine on the label and use the information in the following
tabulation as a guide.

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