Boil water notice lifted for 20,000 connections after weekend re - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Boil water notice lifted for 20,000 connections after weekend repairs

Source: Hinds County Department of Emergency Management Source: Hinds County Department of Emergency Management
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: Hinds County Department of Emergency Management Source: Hinds County Department of Emergency Management
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

The boil water notice for the city of Jackson has been lifted. The 20,000 connections are now safe to drink from according to the city.

According to a tweet from Mayor Tony Yarber, all water has been restored to the City of Jackson. The affected areas were under a boil water advisory. 

The city issued a precautionary boil water notice until further notice for the following area over the weekend that has been lifted.

  • Surface Water Customers with zip codes of 39204, 39212 and 39209
  • Byram Surface Water Customers with zip codes of 39272
  • Jackson State University 1400 JR Lynch Street, 39272

Well Water customers are not affected.

This advisory affected approximately 20,000 connections on the drinking water system.

This is a precautionary advisory. This notice does not mean that your water is unsafe, but it does mean that you must take precaution and boil your water before use. All customers are advised to boil their drinking water until adequate pressure is restored to the system. Water should be brought to a rolling boil for one minute for the following: cooking or baking, making ice cubes, taking medication, brushing teeth, washing food, mixing baby formula or food, mixing juices or drinks feeding pets, washing dishes and all other consumption.

Residents will be notified immediately when the advisory is lifted.

During a press conference Saturday evening Jackson Mayor Tony Yarber said all three sections of the water line have been replaced and the repair work was ahead of schedule.

"I can not reassure residents that this will not happen again. This infrastructure problem is happening all over the country. I can assure the residents that Jackson is leading the conversation on these restoration repairs", Yarber said.

"If only people could see the kind of work that goes into these (men) making the repairs.. I understand your frustration. I am as frustrated as you are,"  Mayor Yarber added.

He said the cost of the repairs will fall on the City of Jackson.

According to Sheena Lewis, with the City of Jackson, water distribution has now closed and there will be no distribution on Sunday. 

The city of Jackson tweeted Saturday morning saying contractors worked over night on the water line repair, located on Forest Avenue. 

The water was turned off around 3 p.m. Friday so crews could begin making repairs to the water system. 

On Tuesday, MEMA held a news conference to discuss how the state is prepared to help during this weekend's widespread water outage. 

MEMA Executive Director Lee Smithson stressed that taking care of the citizens of Jackson is Governor Bryant's top priority. Governor Bryant has prepared a State of Emergency, which has already been drafted, just in case repairs don't go as planned. At this point, a State of Emergency is not being declared unless Hinds County requests it.

MEMA says that they, as well as the Health Department, the Department of Environmental Quality, the Department of Public Safety and the National Guard will be on standby all weekend to assist if needed.

As of Tuesday, repairs are still on schedule to be completed by the end of the weekend. MEMA says repairs should not last for more than 30 hours. 

Smithson said MEMA is hoping for the best, but they are required to be prepared for the worst. If you were not impacted by the water outage last month, then you should not be impacted this time. 

Smithson also said there is no truth to the rumors circulating that the health department is telling all city restaurants that they will need to close or bring in portable restrooms. The health department is required to inspect the restaurants that will be affected during the outage to determine if they need to close or bring in their own facilities - but this does not apply to all restaurants. 

Smithson said that residents should be prepared to be self sufficient for 72 hours, but he continued to stress that the outage should not last longer than 30 hours. 

"In Mississippi when things get bad, we get good," said Smithson. "This is not a crisis or disaster. It's an emergency situation. Everyone come together and help your neighbors out. We'll get through this just fine."

MEMA estimates that about 40,000 will be affected by this outage. They announced that the city will be shutting off water for thousands of customers so repairs can be made to a 48-inch pipe off of Forest Avenue.

This is the latest map where Jackson residents can expect low or no pressure:

City officials said there is a "very minimal" chance the water outage will last longer.

Public Works Director Jerriot Smash announced that a 48-inch transmission line concrete pipe is the major problem they are dealing with. The pipe was made out of pre-stressed concrete in the early 1990s, making it a challenge to perform maintenance on. Smash explained that pre-stressed concrete doesn't leave a lot of options besides digging it up since the pipe is buried underground.

The main water leaks span a distance of roughly 3 miles, with the well-known Forest Avenue geyser being one. They run parallel to I-220 and the other two leaks are north and south of the one on Forest Avenue within a 3-mile radius.

The city decided to hire 2 separate contractors to work on the pipe so that it will be fixed quicker.

Although no specific locations were given, city officials said if you experienced any issues on Feb. 10 with water outage or low pressure, then you will likely see issues again this time. Once the water and system pressure is restored, there will be boil water notice for the affected areas for the normal testing period of 48 hours.

Smash also said that all 3 breaks running at the same time has strained the water system in Jackson.

Officials estimated that about 40% of the city's water has been lost and/or leaked since 2011.

Emergency Manager Deputy Chief Brandon Falcon said the fire department is well-prepared and they are used to moving water with previous water main breaks. He does not expect any problems if a fire were to break out during this time.

Deputy Falcon said they are ready, and it will be "business as usual on the firefighting side".

What citizens can and should do to get prepared. 

  • Stockpile water at your home
  • Fill up bath tub to flush toilets, bathe
  • Use the 3-1-1 system: call and report water outages that you see to the city
  • Residents should sign up for Code RED. That is the very best way to stay informed.
    • Sign up on the city website and you will get alerts from the city on status updates, availability of water resources and any other important information

Jackson State University cancels weekend events.

Jackson State University announced that they are implementing an operational strategy ahead of the City of Jackson’s planned water outage.             

The plan includes rescheduling all weekend activities that fall during the projected time period.

  • Graduate school exams (rescheduled for March 25)
  • The Great Reveal, an annual student-oriented event hosted by Greek organizations (rescheduled for March 25)

Note: The baseball series hosting Alabama State will be played as scheduled.

To accommodate the approximately 300 students who will be on campus over the weekend, Student Affairs will deliver bottled water to all residence halls, and portable toilets will be rented and placed throughout campus because of low-water pressure in restrooms. Food service on campus will not be interrupted. 

“The quality of life of our students, staff and visitors will always take precedence over all else,” said JSU interim President Rod Paige. “We will take all necessary measures to ensure our campus community is afforded the necessities they expect.” 

What areas will be impacted?

City officials said that a "triangle area" will be affected by this outage. The area could run from I-55 at Northside Drive to I-220 on the northern boundary all the way down to Byram.

Again, officials stress that if you were affected by the outage about 3 weeks ago, you likely will be affected again.

For more on the Jackson Water Crisis, CLICK HERE. 

Copyright 2017 MSNewsNow. All rights reserved

Powered by Frankly