Water suppliers are required by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality to notify customers to boil water when water samples indicate contamination or when conditions exist that make the water supply vulnerable to contamination. These conditions include:
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It is a notification that advises customers to boil tap water used for drinking, cooking, ice-making and teeth brushing until tests verify the water is safe. The City of Southlake also advises that you boil your pet’s drinking water. It is not necessary to boil water for showering or other external uses.
When service is interrupted and distribution lines are emptied, contaminants can enter the lines that transport water. Although waterborne diseases are extremely rare, they can be serious. The risk is higher for infants, the elderly and persons with immune deficiency disorders. The City of Southlake issues boil-water notices even if the possibility of contamination is remote because we do not want to take any chances with your family’s health.
Once a Boil Water Notice is issued, tests must be completed on the water system to ensure that the drinking water is safe for consumption. These tests take 24-48 hours to complete, and positive results are required before the boil water notice is lifted.
Boiling water is considered the safest and most effective method of water disinfection. Vigorous boiling for two minutes will kill any disease-causing microorganisms and parasites present in water. The flat taste of boiled water can be improved by aerating it (pouring it back and forth from one container to another. In lieu of boiling, you may purchase bottled water or get water from another suitable source.
Even if someone has consumed potentially contaminated water from either a public water system or a private well before they were aware of the boil water advisory, the likelihood of becoming ill is low. Anyone experiencing symptoms such as diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, with or without fever, should seek medical attention.
Yes, most pitchers that have a water filter do not filter out bacteria. If you have other filters on your refrigerator, on your faucet, or under your sink, read the package insert to see if the filter removes bacteria. If in doubt, boil the water before consuming it.
Vigorous hand washing with soap and your tap water is safe for basic personal hygiene. If you are washing your hands to prepare ready to eat food, you should use boiled (then cooled) water or bottled water with hand washing soap.
Do not use untreated tap water for oral hygiene. The CDC recommends brushing teeth with boiled water or bottled water.
The water may be used for showering, baths, shaving and washing, so long as care is taken not to swallow or allow water in eyes or nose or mouth. Children and disabled individuals should have their bath supervised to ensure water is not ingested. The CDC suggests considering a sponge bath to infants to reduce the chance of them swallowing any water. The time spent bathing should be minimized. Though the risk of illness is minimal, individuals who have recent surgical wounds, are immunosuppressed, or have a chronic illness may want to consider using bottled or boiled water for cleansing until the advisory is lifted.
The CDC recommends using disposable plates, cups, and utensils; if possible. Otherwise, household dishwashers are generally safe to use if the water reaches a final rinse temperature of at least 150 degrees Fahrenheit (65.55°Celsius), or if the dishwater has a sanitizing cycle. Be sure to sterilize all baby bottles prior to use.
Yes, it is safe to wash clothes as usual.
Yes, we recommend you do. When service is interrupted and distribution lines are emptied, contaminants can enter the lines that transport water. Although waterborne diseases are extremely rare, they can be serious to humans and animals. The City of Southlake issues boil-water notices even if the possibility of contamination is remote because we do not want to take any chances with your family’s health.
Yes, it is safe to water household plants and gardens.