Boil water order covering Halifax and some nearby communities to last at least 24-48 hours

A boil water order covering the entire Halifax peninsula, Bedford, Spryfield, Timberlea, Hammonds Plains, Beaver Bank and parts of Middle and Lower Sackville is expected to persist for at least 24 to 48 hours, says Halifax Water.

The utility is recommending people boil their water for at least one minute if they are consuming it or using it for food preparation.

Halifax Water says filtering water will not suffice, and water should be boiled under the following circumstances:

  • Drinking.

  • Preparing infant formula.

  • Making ice cubes or juices.

  • Washing fruits or vegetables.

  • Cooking.

  • Brushing teeth; or

  • Any other activity requiring human consumption.

Residents can find out if their address is under a boil water order by using this interactive map.

What went wrong

Jeff Myrick, communications manager for the utility, said a power outage at the JD Kline (Pockwock) Lake Water Treatment Facility allowed some unchlorinated water to enter the system.

"Most water is chlorinated as its treated, unfortunately because of this power bump, it caused the chlorinator to leave the water untreated for a period of time," he said Monday evening.

Myrick said the utility is investigating why its backup power system didn't kick in to allow continued chlorination.

The Pockwock facility, located in Upper Hammonds Plains, services 201,000 people in the Halifax Regional Municipality.

Myrick said the advisory will not be lifted until the issue has been resolved.

"We're tracking the course of where this is going, so we can actually add it to treated water, or flush it out of the system all together," he said. "I expect it will take at least 24 to 48 hours."

Dartmouth residents get water from a different water treatment facility, and are not affected by the boil order.