The City of Kelowna put out a Water Quality Advisory notice for water utility customers on Friday.
This Advisory remains in effect until further notice.
So what does this mean as far as whether or not the water is OK to drink and what sort of actions should be taken?
Here are few things to look at:
If you are a business, you are required to post notifications at all tap and sink locations until the Advisory has been lifted.
The City has created signs for businesses here.
If you have a weakened immune system or any chronic illness, or are either under 12 years of age or over 65 years of age, you are advised to take precaution during the Advisory.
Here's how you can take precautions:
* Boil water for one minute and then store water in a clean and covered container in the fridge.
* Use filtered or distilled water.
* Use an alternative source like bottled water.
More information can be found at Interior Health's public notices.
A number of Water Quality Advisories and Boil Water Notices are in place throughout the Central Okanagan. You can find them listed in our main State of Emergency coverage article.
The City of Kelowna has five main water purveyors within the City limits. To find your water service provider for the most up-to-date information, go to the City's website or to the KJWC.org site to see current status of the five major water purveyors for city residents.
So how does a Water Quality Advisory come into effect?
It happens when the turbidity levels, or number of particles impacting the clarity, rise past 5 NTU (Nephelometric Turbidity Units).
The Nephelometric Turbidity Unit is what measures the number, scale, shape and colour of particles found in water when a white light is shone at 90 degrees (source: Wikipedia).
The table below shows the status of the Okanagan Lake intakes for the City of Kelowna. (status as at Saturday morning) Click here for updated status.
If you have concerns about your water, there is free testing available through CARO.
Types of Alerts
Water Quality Advisory - Used in situations in which the public health threat posed by the water supply system is modest, and actions can be taken to reduce the risks through means other than requiring a Boil Water Notice or Do Not Use Water Notice.
Boil Water Notice - Used in situations in which the public health threat posed by the water supply system is significant and the nature of the threat is one that can be effectively addressed through boiling of the water.
Do Not Use Notice - Used in situations where a significant public health threat exists in relation to the water supply system, and the threat cannot be adequately addressed through a Water Quality Advisory or Boil Water Notice.