No end date for boil water notice on Lettermacaward water supply

Irish Water is unable to determine how long the Boil Water Notice will remain in place on the Lettermacaward Water Supply.

The notice, arising out of operational difficulties at the Lettermacaward Water Treatment Plant, is in place to protect the health of approximately 2,200 customers in the Lettermacaward, Portnoo, Rossbeg, Cleangort, Doochary, Meenacross, Dooey, Glenties Road, Maghery and Falmore areas.

Following consultation with the Health Service Executive (HSE), Irish Water and Donegal County Council issued the Boil Water Notice on Friday, 12 August.

Our drinking water compliance and operational experts are working with colleagues in Donegal County Council to resolve the situation with a view to having the notice lifted as quickly as possible. In the meantime, all customers of this supply are advised to boil water before use until further notice.

Due to demand exceeding supply, water restrictions are also required on the Lettermacaward Water Supply. As the dry weather continues, so too does the high level of domestic, commercial and agricultural demand for treated drinking water. In order to maintain a daytime water supply the overnight restrictions will be in place between 10pm and 9am.

Seamus O’Brien, Irish Water’s Asset Operations Lead, has acknowledged the impact the Boil Water Notice and the restrictions are having on the community and apologised for the inconvenience to customers.

“We will continue to work closely with Donegal County Council and the HSE to monitor the supply and lift the notice as quickly as it is safe to do so and safeguard the supply for the future.

“Public health is Irish Water’s number one priority, and this Boil Water Notice has been put in place to protect customers following operational issues at the water treatment plant.

“Boil Water Notices are issued in order to safeguard public health. In all instances immediate action is taken to address the cause of the issue in order to lift the notice as quickly as possible, in agreement with the HSE.

“We are appealing to customers to be mindful of how they use their water at home. Do not run taps needlessly, take showers instead of baths and postpone using dishwashers and washing machines where possible.”

Irish Water will continue to monitor water levels at the supply over the coming weeks.

Vulnerable customers who have registered with Irish Water receive direct communication on this Boil Water Notice and are reminded that the water is safe to consume once boiled. Those who have concerns should contact our customer care team on 1800 278 278.

Customers can check if they are impacted by this Boil Water Notice by visiting www.water.ie/help/water-quality/ and entering their property’s Eircode in the search bar.

Water must be boiled for:

  • Drinking
  • Drinks made with water
  • Preparation of salads and similar foods, which are not cooked prior to eating
  • Brushing of teeth
  • Making of ice – discard ice cubes in fridges and freezers and filtered water in fridges. Make ice from cooled boiled water.

What actions should be taken:

  • Use water prepared for drinking when preparing foods that will not be cooked (e.g. washing salads)
  • Water can be used for personal hygiene, bathing and flushing of toilets but not for brushing teeth or gargling
  • Boil water by bringing to a vigorous, rolling boil (e.g. with an automatic kettle) and allow to cool. Cover and store in a refrigerator or cold place. Water from the hot tap is not safe to drink. Domestic water filters will not render water safe to drink
  • Caution should be taken when bathing children to ensure that they do not swallow the bathing water
  • Prepare infant feeds with water that has been brought to the boil once and cooled. Do not use water that has been re-boiled several times. If bottled water is used for the preparation of infant feeds it should be boiled once and cooled. If you are using bottled water for preparing baby food, be aware that some natural mineral water may have high sodium content. The legal limit for sodium in drinking water is 200mg per litre. Check the label on the bottled water to make sure the sodium or `Na’ is not greater than 200mg per litre. If it is, then it is advisable to use a different type of bottled water. If no other water is available, then use this water for as short a time as possible. It is important to keep babies hydrated.

Great care should be taken with boiled water to avoid burns and scalds as accidents can easily happen, especially with children.

Updates will be available on our Water Supply Updates section on water.ie including a map of the affected area, on Twitter @IWCare and via our customer care helpline, open 24/7 on 1800 278 278. Customers are advised to set their location on water.ie to view updates specific to their water supply. Further information in relation to the boil water notice is available from https://www.water.ie/water-supply/water-quality/boil-water-notice/

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