Fremont residents advised to boil drinking water after lightning knocks out power

by Bob Glissmann, originally posted on July 8, 2016


Fremont residents were advised Thursday to boil their drinking water after lightning knocked out power to the water treatment system overnight.

Lightning knocked out power to the plant around 3 a.m., said Larry Andreasen, Fremont’s water and sewer superintendent. A generator kicked in, but another lightning strike knocked that out, he said. 

The loss of power to the pumps at the water treatment plant led to a loss of pressure in the system, Andreasen said. “That’s when backflow can happen into our system,” he said. “It can create a vacuum, basically, and suck in dirty water. Since we’re a chlorinated system, it should kill anything that gets in there.”

Crews are taking 160 water samples and will send them to the state for testing, Andreasen said. The boil advisory is a precaution, he said.

What does a boil advisory mean?

Heat water in a pot until it reaches a rolling boil (a rolling boil looks turbulent — it’s not enough for a few bubbles to come to the surface).
Let it boil at a rolling boil for one minute.
Turn off the stove and let the water cool.
Pour water into a clean container and cover.
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