Illinois American Water has issued a boil water order to a large portion of its Metro East service area.
The company also canceled a second one that had been in effect in the Alton area.
A contractor working at the company’s Metro East water treatment plant near East St. Louis hit a 24-inch water main, causing a drop in water pressure, the company said Wednesday.
The boil order is being issued in accordance with Illinois EPA regulations. Anytime water pressure drops below 20 pounds per square inch in any part of a community’s distribution system, a boil order must be issued as a precaution to protect
Customers in the affected area should bring their water to a rolling boil for five minutes before using for drinking or cooking.
Water is OK for bathing, washing and other common uses.
The boil water order is in effect for the following communities directly served by Illinois American Water:
• East St. Louis
• Fairmont City
• Washington Park
• Cahokia (from Commonfields of Cahokia PWD)
• Canteen Township
• St. Clair Township
• Stookey Township
• Smithton Township
The following sale-for-resale (wholesale) communities are also affected. The communities are responsible for notifying their customers-residents regarding the boil water order:
• Scott Air Force Base
• O’Fallon (Also provides water to Fairview Heights)
• Commonfields of Cahokia Public Water District
• Concordia Water District
Karen Cooper, senior manager of field operations and production explained that the contractor was clearing trees and brush for a construction project and hit a 24-inch water main.
“We apologize for this inconvenience to our customers,” she said. “Repairs will be made. Our team is also working hard to lift the boil water order as soon as possible.”
Illinois American Water direct customers are being notified of the boil water order via media outreach, customer calls and website alerts at www.illinoisamwater.com. Information is also provided to our customer service center representatives.
Customers will be notified in the same manner when the boil water order is lifted.
Late Wednesday, the company announced that it had called an end to the boil order brought about by a main break in Alton on Monday.