The boil-water advisory has been lifted for people who live and work west of the Willamette River and have Portland city water. On Saturday, July 21, 2012, Portland’s water bureau issued a ‘Boil Water Notice’ after a second test was positive for bacterial contamination in Reservoir 3 inWashington Park. An investigation into the source of the contamination is ongoing.
In addition to those living west of the Willamette River, customers in the Burlington Water District, Valley View Water District, Palatine Hills Water District, Lake Grove Water District, West Slope Water District and the City of Tigard were also affected. Customers in those areas were under the boil-water advisory for about 24 hours. In 2009, fecal contamination from a bird source caused a similar situation.
During a boil-water advisory, residents can still do laundry, wash hands and bathe as long as the water does not enter their mouths. They cannot use tap water to drink, wash food or food preparation areas, make ice, brush teeth, gargle or any other activity where the water could enter the body .
The advisory was lifted after tests upstream and downstream were clear of contamination. Reservoir 3 is being drained and inspected as precaution and will be put back into service whenever it is safe to do so.
Customers who were under the advisory can now drink tap water without boiling it first. Before taking the first drink, the Portland Water Bureau is recommending that customers fully open all of their taps and let them run for a full two minutes to flush any potentially contaminated water from the pipes.