Winnipeg Lifts Precautionary Boil-Water Advisory

Winnipeg has lifted a precautionary boil-water advisory put in place on Tuesday.

Mayor Brian Bowman made the announcement Thursday afternoon in a YouTube video (above) published just minutes before he addressed the media to deliver the news.

“The province has advised us — for the second day in a row — the water has tested just fine,” Bowman said in the 30-second clip.

After thanking members of the public service for their around-the-clock work over the past couple of days, Bowman thanked Winnipeggers for their efforts during the temporary inconvenience.

Efforts now turn to figuring out why there were positive results for coliform and E. coli in the first place, said Diane Sacher, the city’s waste and water director.

“We do not know what has led to this,” she said. “Now that we’ve got the all-clear … we’re going to be shifting our focus to find out what happened, why we did have those positive test results.

“That’s obviously going to be a high priority for us now.”

During the advisory, businesses and residents were told that tap water was safe for bathing and laundry, but were advised to boil it for at least a minute before drinking it.

Most coffee shops and restaurants were open, although some menu items were not available. Schools were also open, but some warned students to bring bottled water because the water fountains were closed. It was business as usual at city pools.

Hospitals saw no sign of a spike in illness, and surgeries and other services went on as usual.

An advisory was put in place Tuesday after bacteria showed up in extremely low levels in six of 39 water samples taken during routine testing.

— With files from The Canadian Press