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The Today File

Your guide to the latest news from around the Northwest

October 7, 2014 at 1:24 PM

Mercer Island may lift boil-water alert soon

Mercer Island still doesn’t know when exactly it will lift its boil-water alert, which has been in effect for much of the last week and a half.

But now that pipe inspections have concluded without finding any potential E. coli bacteria contamination source, the city says officials will decide Wednesday morning on a timeline for lifting the boil-water alert.

For the fifth straight day, 18 water-samples revealed no E. coli presence. Mercer Island is continuing to flush its pipes with water containing a doubled amount of chlorine until technicians are confident the chlorine has been able to circulate and disinfect the entire system.

“At this point, we are all eager to see life return to normal, but our first priority is protecting the health of our citizens,” Mayor Bruce Bassett said in a statement Tuesday. “The City Council will certainly be discussing long-term actions to ensure this won’t happen again.”

More than half of the city’s food-service businesses are open with limited menus. But altogether, the businesses have been hemorrhaging thousands of dollars due to wasted food and lost business.

To help the businesses recover from the effects of the long and indefinite boil-water alert, the city and Mercer Island Chamber of Commerce are beginning to plan a “Dine Local” campaign. The city is also getting a Small Business Disaster Assistance Loan program started for businesses that need it.

Mercer Island schools are still open and are abiding by Public Health – Seattle & King County rules for serving food and water.

Comments | Topics: E. coli, Mercer Island, seattle public utilties

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