Second boil water notice to affect parts of Kildare

Issues relate to Leixlip Water Treatment Plant

Leader Reporter

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Second boil water notice to affect parts of Kildare

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In consultation with the HSE, Irish Water and Fingal County Council can confirm that, as a precaution, a Boil Water Notice to protect the health of customers supplied by Leixlip Water Treatment Plant has been put in place for a second time.

As with the last Boil Water Notice, approximately 600,000 people are impacted. Irish Water said the areas impacted were the same in a previous boil water notice issued last month.

Parts of Kildare are affected, as well as parts of Fingal, areas in Dublin City Council, parts of South Dublin County Council, and Dunboyne in Meath. 

Due to heavy rain, turbidity (cloudy water due to suspended particles levels) in the source water for the old Leixlip Plant exceeded acceptable levels.

Plant operators reacted quickly before alarms were activated and shut down the old plant to stop this water entering the network. There were no issues at the new plant, where the level of turbidity was managed by the newer technology on site. It was essential to re-start production at the old plant, which produces 20% of drinking water for Dublin, otherwise significant restrictions and outages would be inevitable. As Irish Water cannot guarantee the quality the water from the old plant, a Boil Water Notice is now in place.

Speaking about the Boil Water Notice, Eamon Gallen, Irish Water’s General Manager said: "Irish Water acknowledges and apologises for the impact and inconvenience caused by this Boil Water Notice to homes and businesses. We are very disappointed that a Boil Water Notice has to be imposed again but as we outlined the last time, our number one priority is the public health and the safety and well-being of our customers.

“The choice we were faced with was customers having a severely restricted water supply for a long period of time or having water for sanitation purposes such as showering and flushing of toilets. We were left with no option but to resume production at the old plant in the knowledge that a Boil Water Notice would then be necessary. We will work with Fingal County Council to get the Boil Water Notice lifted as soon as possible, subject to consultation with the EPA and HSE.”

Irish Water is in the process of contacting registered vulnerable customers who are affected by this Boil Water Notice to advise them. We would be grateful if the public, media and elected representatives would share the news of the Boil Water Notice as it is essential that we reach as many people as possible.
Should customers have any queries regarding this Boil Water Notice they should contact Irish Water directly on our customer care helpline.
Updates are available on the Water Supply Updates section on our website, on Twitter @IWCare and via our customer care helpline open 24/7 on 1850 278 278.

Further information on Boil Water Notices can be found on our website https://www.water.ie/ water-supply/water-quality/ boil-water-notice/ 

Boil Water Notice advice:
Water must be boiled for:
• Drinking
• Drinks made with water
• Preparation of salads and similar foods, which are not cooked prior to eating
• Brushing of teeth
• Making of ice - discard ice cubes in fridges and freezers and filtered water in fridges. Make ice from cooled boiled water.

What actions should be taken:
• Use water prepared for drinking when preparing foods that will not be cooked (e.g. washing salads)
• Water can be used for personal hygiene, bathing and flushing of toilets but not for brushing teeth or gargling
• Boil water by bringing to a vigorous, rolling boil (e.g. with an automatic kettle) and allow to cool. Cover and store in a refrigerator or cold place. Water from the hot tap is not safe to drink. Domestic water filters will not render water safe to drink
• Caution should be taken when bathing children to ensure that they do not swallow the bathing water
• Prepare infant feeds with water that has been brought to the boil once and cooled. Do not use water that has been re-boiled several times. If bottled water is used for the preparation of infant feeds it should be boiled once and cooled. Bottled water can also be used to make up infant formula. All bottled water, with the exception of natural mineral water, is regulated to the same standard as drinking water. It is best not to use bottled water labelled as ‘Natural Mineral Water’ as it can have high levels of sodium (salt) and other minerals, although it rarely does. ‘Natural Mineral Water’ can be used if no other water is available, for as short a time as possible, as it is important to keep babies hydrated.
Great care should be taken with boiled water to avoid burns and scalds as accidents can easily happen, especially with children.