Despite a water boil order for thousands of King County families due to a risk of e.Coli, the water district is skeptical as to whether the public is even at risk.
The Washington state Department of Health issued the boil order. The area affected is S. 212th Street to the north, Puget Sound to the west, Kent-Des Moines Road to the south and 14th Avenue to the east. About 5,000 families and businesses are affected.
It won’t be known until Tuesday or Wednesday when the order will be lifted. Residents can pick up free bottled water from the water district office located at 922 S. 219 Street.
The water district is flushing the entire system after a routine test found traces of e.Coli. State inspectors are trying to pinpoint the cause of contamination, but the water district is convinced the public has nothing to worry about. Out of six test sites only one tested positive for e.Coli.
“Preliminarily, we believe it came from a sampling process and it came from exterior spigot,” said Water District 54 Commissioner Vic Pennington, “Not the water."
Pennington says it’s still best to err on the side of caution.
“There is a lot of public traffic there, a lot of people walking their dogs and that type of thing. So that may be what the source was,” said Pennington.
The boil order is affecting restaurants and other businesses which had to close as a result.
The cost to flush the system won’t be known until the district gets the bill next month.
KING 5's Jake Whittenberg contributed to this report