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Precautions to Take During a Boil Water Advisory

It's important that you take these simple precautions to keep you and your family safe during a boil water advisory.

General Precautions

  • DO NOT use or consume water that has not been disinfected.
  • DO NOT use or ice or drinks made with water that has not been disinfected.
  • DO NOT use or consume raw foods rinsed with water that has not been disinfected.
  • DO NOT brush your teeth with untreated tap water. Use bottled or disinfected water.

Drinking Water

During a boil water advisory, your drinking water should be restricted to:

  • Commercially-bottled water
  • Water that has been disinfected by boiling at a rolling boil for 1 minute and allowing to cool or by distilling
  • Water provided by an approved public water supply in a covered sanitized container
  • Water from a licensed drinking water hauler truck

Food Preparation

Use caution when preparing food during a boil water advisory.

  • Bring water to a rolling boil for 1 minute before adding food to cook.
  • Use single service/use articles such as paper plates, plastic utensils, etc., if possible.
  • Clean and sanitize all kitchen equipment/utensils/tableware using the drinking water alternatives listed above. These items can also be disinfected using dishwashing machines that have a dry cycle or a final rinse that exceeds 113°F for 20 minutes or 122°F for 5 minutes or 162°F for 1 minute.
  • Wash food preparation surfaces with disinfected water.

After the Boil Water Advisory is Cancelled

Once the boil water advisory has been lifted, don't forget to take these additional steps to protect you and your family.

  • Dispose of any ice from ice makers or ice machines.
  • Flush pipes and faucets by running the cold water faucet for at least 5 minutes.
  • Change any filtering devices that you may have on your home per the manufacturer’s instructions for use.

Resources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), https://www.cdc.gov/ncezid/dfwed/index.html