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(10,160 posts)
Mon Mar 27, 2023, 04:24 PM Mar 2023

Philadelphians wait to hear if their water was contaminated by a nearby chemical spill

Philadelphians remain in limbo after city officials said over the weekend that a nearby chemical spill may have contaminated the water supply — but they don't yet know for sure.

On Sunday morning, the city told residents they might want to drink and cook with bottled water because officials couldn't be certain that 8,100 gallons of a latex finishing solution that spilled into a Delaware River tributary late Friday hadn't wended its way into the city's water supply, even though testing didn't show any contamination.

City officials would later correct this, assuring residents that the tap water was safe to drink Sunday afternoon and Monday — but not before the warning set off a minor panic and prompted droves of people to flood nearby grocery stores and bodegas, clearing the shelves of bottled water.

Still, the city isn't in the clear. Officials say water sampling results and updated hydraulic modeling confirm that tap water is currently safe to drink — but only until 11:59 p.m. Monday night.

That was how long officials estimated it would take for river water that entered the city's Baxter Drinking Water Treatment Plant early Monday morning to move through treatment facilities and water mains before coming out of customers' taps. Officials said they had to open the intakes to keep a minimum level of water in the system to prevent damage to equipment and keep water available for firefighting.


Again. Oh goody.

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