Boil water advisory due to E. coli lifted in Tega Cay

TEGA CAY, S.C. — A boil water advisory has been lifted Thursday for everyone in Tega Cay after E. coli was found during regular testing the day before.

Customers were asked Wednesday afternoon to boil their drinking water as a precaution.

Officials said one of 11 routine samples they tested showed E. coli was in “an extremely small section” of the city’s water system. The bacteria can be dangerous if consumed.

Authorities asked customers to boil their water for at least one minute before drinking or cooking. Water should also be boiled, or bottled water must be used, in the following instances: Drinking, brushing teeth, washing fruits and vegetables, preparing food and baby formula, making ice, and giving water to pets.

On Thursday, Tega Cay said the advisory had been lifted and residents no longer needed to boil their water.

“I’m taking it seriously,” said resident Russ Campbell. “I dumped all of our ice out of the refrigerator. My wife was at Harris Tetter yesterday and everybody was buying water.”

Officials said repeat bacteriological samples were collected and analyzed by a certified lab. The results showed the system is now safe to use.

However, Campbell has some questions.

“I wonder when they say it’s OK, how do we purge our lines in our house and our refrigerator,” he said.

After re-testing, city leaders determined home flushing is unnecessary.

Tod Nettnin owns Abbott’s Frozen Custard and had to buy bottled water for cleaning and other tasks.

“It’s a minor inconvenience but one we’re happy to take for everybody’s safe,” Nettnin said.

City leaders said Thursday afternoon that they do not know if E. coli was present in the water or if the first test was a false-positive.

Statement from Tega Cay:

“Although one sample indicated the presence of E. coli, we do not know if it was present in the water or if the bottle became contaminated before the sample collection process. We decided to take proactive measures to ensure the safety of our residents by issuing a boil water advisory. After favorable results from repeated sampling and thorough discussions with the Department of Environmental Services, they determined home flushing is unnecessary. However, flushing water lines is a good practice if a home has been vacant for an extended period, as it helps remove stagnant water.

“Our commitment to the health and safety of our residents is unwavering. With our routine and sufficient water sampling, we are confident in the quality of the water we provide. Over the years, we have consistently maintained high compliance, ensuring safe and reliable water services.”

Anyone with questions is asked to call the Utility Department at 803-548-3514.

(WATCH BELOW: Delays expected on Highway 74 in Union County due to water main repairs)

Comments on this article