A water main break in Somerset Monday night left the small city without fresh water.
A SAWS spokeswoman said a gas contractor accidentally broke through the line while digging Monday afternoon.
That caused a problem know as ‘de-watering’.
“The water pressure is lost in the lines and tanks and there are opportunities for organisms or something else to contaminate the supply,” said Anne Hayden, a spokeswoman for SAWS.
Crews were able to patch up the pipe fairly quickly, but cleaning the pipe is a much longer process.
The pipe has to be flushed with clean water and then tested for purity. It will likely be early Wednesday morning before residents will have access to clean water again.
Until then, residents are urged to boil their water to be safe. Showering poses no health threats, unless water is ingested while doing so.
SAWS crews handed out fresh water to people Monday night at three locations around the city, including city hall.
They are expected to do the same thing tomorrow.
Locals said spreading the word about the water contamination was difficult.
“Most people around here don’t have land lines so most of might not know, so I’m just letting everybody know,” said Daisy Castillo, a convenience store clerk who was telling everyone who walked through the door.
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