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Boil water notice issued for Fort Sheppard Drive area

 Crews are working on a well-needed upgrade of water lines throughout  Uphills’ Fort Sheppard Drive area in Nelson. - City of Nelson photo
Crews are working on a well-needed upgrade of water lines throughout Uphills’ Fort Sheppard Drive area in Nelson.
— image credit: City of Nelson photo

The City of Nelson has rescind its water advisory, which was issued all over town Monday.

In consultation with the Interior Health Authority, the City lifted the advisory early on Thursday afternoon (June 5).

However, roughly 150 homes in and around Uphills’ Fort Sheppard Drive have been issued a boil water notice. Crews are working on a well-needed upgrade of water lines throughout the neighbourhood, and the City has had to rely on the secondary Selous Creek water main to supply homes surrounding Fort Sheppard during the course of the work.

The boil water notice is in effect from the 900 block of Gore to the top of Fort Sheppard Drive.

“Selous Creek is a water source we haven’t used for a number of years,” said Nelson's Acting Director of Operations and Utilities Rob Nystrom. “But the system appears to be working well, despite the increased turbidity of the water it’s providing.”

The slight cloudiness of the water is due to normal spring run off, Nystrom added.

City staff went door to door in the Fort Sheppard neighbourhood Thursday afternoon advising residents of the boil water advisory.

Interior Health recommends that water be boiled rapidly for 2 minutes, or a safe alternative be used.  This should include water intended for drinking, washing fruits and vegetables, making beverages or ice, or brushing teeth.

Boiled water should then be refrigerated in a clean, covered container. Affected Uphill residents could also choose to use bottled or distilled water, or water that has been filtered through a well-maintained treatment device.

Earlier this week, the City had intended to use the Selous main for all of the City’s water, while the Uphill water main replacement project was underway. A water quality advisory was issued in anticipation of increased turbidity from the Selous watershed.

But the City of Nelson Water Utility has instead reconnected the majority of the City to water from its primary source — Five Mile Creek, which is running clear.

Nystrom says while some residents of Uphill will have to bare the inconvenience of slight water quality issues on and off through the summer, the outcome of the city’s ambitious water main upgrade project will be well worth it.

“We’re replacing 10 blocks of some vintage cast and galvanized water main, “ he says. “Very vintage.”

The cast iron water main that’s being unearthed and replaced was installed in the 1920s and the galvanized iron in the ‘50s.

“And some of it was leaking really badly in places,” says Nystrom.

“Uphill will be a beehive of activity this summer,’ he adds, noting that after the work is completed, the system will be safe and reliable for decades to come.”

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