The city of Battle Creek issued an alert Tuesday evening advising a good portion of Calhoun County to boil their water before using. The Boil Water Advisory stemmed from a significant leak on a 16-inch water main, behind the building that housed the former K-mart store, near Capital Avenue SW and Dickman Road.

This alert includes all Battle Creek neighbors on the city water system, the entire City of Springfield, and the following townships served by city water – Bedford, Emmett, Leroy and Pennfield. The break has caused water pressure to decrease to levels that could allow contamination to enter the water system. The city believes there are few customers who have lost water service completely.

Credit Tara Brower Reniger
Credit Tara Brower Reniger

Crews responded immediately and shut off the valves necessary to control the leak. Staff will take samples to verify water quality prior to lifting this boil water advisory.

We will provide more updates as they become available.

Nate Adams TSM
Nate Adams TSM

Below is additional information from the city of Battle Creek about exactly what a boil advisory means as this is affecting a larger amount of the population than usual for these situations.

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Whenever the pressure of a municipal water system is reduced to allow for work to be done on the water main, the potential for bacteria to enter the system exists.  Bacteria are generally not harmful and are common throughout our environment.   As a safeguard to your health, The City of Battle Creek is ADVISING you to boil water before using it for consumption.

What should I do?

The City of Battle Creek advises that you DO NOT DRINK THE WATER WITHOUT BOILING IT FIRST.  Bring all water to a boil, let it boil for one minute, and let it cool before using, or use bottled water.  Boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking, making ice, brushing teeth, washing dishes, and food preparation until further notice.  Boiling kills bacteria and other organisms in the water.

What is being done?

These precautionary actions are being taken due to the need to de-water a portion of the water distribution system to facilitate improvements or repairs. Whenever the pressure of a water system is reduced to this degree for any significant length of time, precautionary measures are recommended.

The City of Battle Creek will be working to get pressure restored as soon as possible after the work is completed.  The water division staff will be taking other actions such as flushing and collecting bacteriological samples from around the affected area.  The samples will be collected to determine that the water quality meets the state drinking water standards.  The City of Battle Creek will inform newspaper, radio, and television media when tests show no bacteria and you no longer need to boil your water.

The sampling process required to make this determination takes a minimum of 24 hours but may take longer if needed.  This boil water advisory shall remain in effect until results from the sampling verify the water is safe to drink.  Customers will be advised, through the newspaper, radio, and television media when the boil water advisory has been lifted.

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