Brainerd Distributes Drinking Water While Awaiting Test Results on Contamination
It’s been over five days since a boil water advisory was issued for Brainerd’s water supply, and officials are hoping that they will be able to lift that advisory soon.
On Thursday, August 10, a boil water advisory was issued for Brainerd due to the presence of coliform bacteria within the city’s water. Because of this contamination, Brainerd Public Utility (BPU) has chlorinated the water supply and is now awaiting testing from the Minnesota Department of Health, with BPU hoping the results will be available by late afternoon on Wednesday, August 16.
“We’ve got to make sure that we’re allowing the public to have safe notice of what’s going on with the water,” said Brainerd Mayor Dave Badeaux. “Right now, we’re just going day to day making sure that we’re testing it, clearing the system, coordinating and making sure that we get those contaminants out. Hopefully this will be over in a short period of time, however, we’re just going to continue to make do with what we can until that order is final.”
While Brainerd Public Utilities is currently working to flush contaminants out of their distribution systems, the city of Brainerd has been distributing bottled water to ensure residents have a source of clean water. One recent distribution was held Monday at the Brainerd City Hall parking lot.
“Folks are lining up and we’re giving them a gallon of water and a 24 pack of bottles,” explained Brainerd Park Board Member Andrew Shipe.
“We’re trying to help out as much as we possibly can, trying to get through things as quick as possible as well,” added Badeaux.
This contamination has sparked a conversation within the city to determine if Brainerd’s water should be treated more frequently in order to prevent contamination in the future.
“Brainerd has been very resistant to the chlorination of water,” said Badeaux. “But because of our process, there is a risk of this happening from time to time. It happened about eight years ago, and we’re back into it again now. I think that’s a discussion that’s going to have to happen, but that’s a discussion for the residents of Brainerd to make for themselves.”
“Citizens should keep their eyes on the local alerts as well as our city website and our social media for as much information on when this boil order will be complete,” said Badeaux.