Residents, businesses in Westerly told to boil water
The Westerly Water Department issued a boil water advisory for customers in Westerly and Pawcatuck.
The advisory, which came out on Wednesday, means boiled water for should be used for drinking, making ice, brushing teeth washing dishes and food prep.
"We're not using any water at all," Ashley Toth, the manager of a Dunkin' Donuts shop in Westerly, said Thursday.
"Right now, we are brewing coffee at a safe location that has good water. We're brewing into urns, and our GMs and our managers are moving the coffee around."
E. coli was detected in one of the wells connected to the Westerly water supply during a routine a test Monday.
"One of the sample locations showed a positive for E. coli and total coliform," Paul Corina of the town Department of Public Works.
DPW followed protocol and did subsequent testing the following day, but the Bradford No. 2 well seemed compromised.
"But the well is offline right now, and what we're going to do is super-chlorinate that well and keep it offline," Corina said.
Some business owners old NBC 10 the boil advisory has hurt business.
"We’ve already lost hundreds of dollars in loss of business and replenishing the product we had to discard," said Mark Lacz, Owner of Casa Della Luce in Westerly. "We had to dispose of all ice, clean and sanitize our ice bins, and I've been to Walmart about three times today stocking up on water.”
The Emery family is doing the same.
"We put two or three water bottles in the bathroom on the sink to remind us when we brush our teeth that we can’t use the water," said Abiageal Emery.
"Better safe than sorry," said Kevin Emery. "I'm happy to do it until we know it’s safe to drink the water again."
One Westerly woman said her son came home sick with stomach pains and diarrhea. The Department of Public Works says contact a doctor if symptoms appear.
Tests done on Thursday will come back Friday.
Anyone with questions can call the Westerly Water Department at 401-348-2561.