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Houston boil water notice lifted | Here's what to do before drinking water

City of Houston residents and parts of Missouri City were under a boil water notice for two days after a massive water main break.

HOUSTON — Yes, the boil water notice has finally been lifted.

Here are a few steps you’re going to want to take before consuming your tap water.

  1. Flush your water system by running cold water down all your faucets in your home for one minute
  2. Clean automatic ice makers by making and discarding three batches of ice
  3. Run water softeners though a regeneration cycle

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality analyzed 44 water samples from throughout the City of Houston to establish corrective actions necessary to lift the boil water notice.

Test results indicated that water provided by Houston meets all regulatory standards and is safe for human consumption.

AlertHouston is asking everyone to share this information with people who typically drink water from their tap, especially those who may not have received an alert directly.

RELATED: Busted water line was on city's radar for repairs

RELATED: Houston-area restaurants impacted by boil water notice after water main break

City officials say they’ll continue working on Clinton Street where the water main broke until early next week.

Saturday was day 2, and city crews were back out digging and removing dirt as sections of the road remained closed for heavy machinery.

Down the street watching from her bus stop, we spotted 71-year-old Eva Stubblefield, sipping coffee made from her freshly boiled tap water.

“It was scary, yeah,” she said.

Stubblefield, who’s lived in the east Houston neighborhood her whole life, recalled the flash flood she and her neighbors witnessed Thursday afternoon.

“I was surprised that so much water had come out so soon that much at one time. That was the first time I had seen flooding that bad in my whole life,” she said.

Houston city officials say an 8-foot-wide water pipe ruptured, causing the chaos.

“Even during Harvey, it wasn’t that flooded,” Stubblefield said.

The break forced Houstonians under a boil water notice -- a disruption Stubblefield said she took in stride.

“I’m used to boiling water. I always boil my water, so I just got a bigger pot to last all day,” she said.

While the boil water notice was lifted early Saturday, officials said crews will need at least until Tuesday to get the water line back up and running again.

It's a job residents like Stubblefield understand must be done.

“I understand there are growing pains. It’s a growing city, and finally it’s beginning to grow a little bit more out here, so it may be part of the growing pain experience,” she said.

If anyone has any questions regarding the lifted boil water notice, contact 311 or (713) 837-0311.

Update on water line repairs

Mayor Sylvester Turner said crews are working round the clock to repair the broken water main and he expects the work to last through the weekend.

"This particular pipe is 35 years old, quite frankly within the range of usability," Turner said.

He said the size of the leak is what contributed to the massive break and caused no or low water pressure that impacted hospitals, schools and businesses.  

The mayor admitted it's a reminder that infrastructure issues need to be a priority.

RELATED: Busted water line was on city's radar for repairs

RELATED: Tankers and trailers full of drinkable water arrive in Houston to meet high demand

How did the water main break happen?

A City of Houston contractor from Harper Brothers Construction was working on the leaking line. It burst when he moved some soil, according to AlertHouston. A representative for the company declined to comment on the incident.

"They were working to repair a leak we had already detected," Turner said.

The break in the water line caused rushing water to quickly flood the 610/East Loop near Clinton and threatened nearby homes. 

About a dozen drivers got stuck in the high water. Most waded to dry land but three of them were stranded on top of their vehicles until Houston Fire Department crews came to their rescue.


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