A boil-water advisory or boil-water order is a public health advisory or directive given by government or health authorities to consumers when a community's drinking water is, or could be, contaminated by pathogens. Under a boil-water advisory (BWA), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that water be brought to a rolling boil for one minute before it is consumed in order to kill protozoa, bacteria and viruses. At altitudes above 2,000 meters (6,561 feet), boiling should be extended to 3 minutes, as the lower boiling point at high altitudes requires more time to kill such organisms.
It is standard regulation to report a boil-water advisory when there is a break in the line. A sample is taken from the line and sent to a lab for testing. This process can take anywhere from 24-72 hours. It is also required to notify the local media who then notifies the public. As soon as the results are sent back to our office, we will then notify the media that the advisory has been lifted. The media will then notify the public.