- The government of Nunavut has lifted the do-not-drink advisory for Iqaluit’s drinking water.
Dr. Michael Patterson, Nunavut’s senior public health officer, said in a statement released Friday afternoon that “thorough testing and assessments undertaken over the past eight weeks confirm that the water is safe for consumption and that the danger of recontamination is low.”
“I’d like to thank Iqalummiut for their patience; I know the last few weeks have been difficult.” The government issued the do-not-drink advisory on Oct. 12, confirming that the city’s water supply had been contaminated with fuel.
Before lifting the do-not-drink order, Patterson stated that his office wanted to see at least three consecutive test results that showed no evidence of significant fuel contamination in the water treatment plant.
According to him, all tests performed after Oct. 19 show that hydrocarbon levels are either undetectable or within safe drinking levels.
Since the discovery of fuel contamination in Iqaluit’s water supply, he said, new monitors have been installed. The site has been remediated, water tanks have been scrubbed, and new procedures have been put in place to help avert future incidents.
The City of Iqaluit warns residents that their tap water may still smell like fuel on occasion. “As a result of trapped vapours in the system, residents may still notice occasional odours in their tap water,” the city said in a news release. “These will fade with time.”
The City of Iqaluit announced Friday afternoon that it had suspended bottled water distribution and the operation of its water refilling stations.
The city’s water quality hotline will remain operational until further notice. Residents are asked to take the observing steps before calling:
- If the concern is with odours, bring the water into another room of your house and re-test for odours.
- Remove the aerator from the faucet.
- Run the water from the tap for 10 minutes, with the aerator cleared.
- Clean the removed aerator, washing it in a chlorine bleach solution, if available.
- Take another piece of water and test for odours,
- Reinstall the aerator.
Source: Nunatsiaq News
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