Boil Water Advisories

In the event of “boil water advisories/ notices”, all food service operations and retail food establishments must secure and use potable water from an approved source, e.g., from tank trucks, or bottled water. In emergencies, or as a temporary measure, water from contaminated or suspect sources can be disinfected by either chlorination or boiling.

Boiling– the water may be purified by boiling. In this method, bring the water to a full boil for at least five (5) minutes. Cool and aerate the boiled water by pouring it through the air from one container to another, or mixing rapidly with a clean utensil. Aeration will reduce the flat taste caused by boiling.

Chlorination– Chlorine bleaches are inexpensive and can be obtained from most grocery, discount, or drug stores. Check the label on the bottle to make sure it indicates the solution is 5.25% sodium hypochlorite with no additional active ingredients.

(Label should read 5.25% Sodium Hypochlorite)

Clear Water: Add 2 drops per quart/8 drops per gallon
Cloudy Water: Add 4 drops per quart/ 16 drops per gallon

A. Wait thirty (30) minutes after adding chlorine before using the water for drinking or cooking purposes.
B. If this treatment does not give the water a taste of chlorine, the above quantities should be doubled.
C. The taste of chlorine is not particularly unpleasant and it will be evidence that the water is safe to drink.

The following are water uses that should be considered, but not limited to:

Food Operations may consider the following alternative procedures to minimize water usage:

After the “water emergency” is officially lifted or water service resumes, these precautionary measures must be followed:

1. Flush the building water lines and clean the faucet screens, water line strainers on mechanical dishwashing machines and similar equipment
2. Flush and sanitize all water-using fixtures and appliances of standing water such as ice machines, beverage dispensers, water heaters, etc.
3. Clean and sanitize all fixtures, sinks, and equipment connected to water lines

There must be water pressure before resuming operations in a food operation.

NOTE: In the case of chemical contamination of the municipal water supply for a food operation, the facility shall immediately cease use of the water supply and contact the local health district.

Should there be any questions during the water emergency regarding appropriate procedures at a food operation, please contact us.