Recent flood conditions at Forbes have resulted in river water ingress into the treated water storage, making drinking water in Forbes Township unsafe to consume.
Water used for drinking or food preparation should be brought to a rolling boil to make it safe. Kettles with automatic shut off switches can do this. Water should then be allowed to cool and stored in a clean container with a lid and refrigerated.
Everyone, particularly people caring for young children, should be careful to avoid scalding, when you are heating and then cooling the water.
Bottled water or cool boiled water should be used for drinking, washing uncooked food (e.g. salad vegetables and fruit), making ice, cleaning teeth, gargling and pet’s drinking water.
Dishes should be washed in hot soapy water or in a dishwasher. Children should take bottled water or cool boiled water to school.
Tap water is safe for bathing. There is a potential risk if water is swallowed during washing and bathing. Parents and carers could consider a sponge bath for children as an alternative.
If you cannot boil the water, unscented household bleach (containing 4% – 5% available chlorine) may be used. Add 2 drops of bleach to 1 litre of water (or 4 drops if the water is cloudy), mix well, and allow to stand for 30 minutes before use.
Forbes Council has addressed the issue at the treatment plant, however, a small volume of contaminated water has entered the network.
This advice should be followed until further notice.
The NSW Health website also includes special considerations for:
- Schools and childcare centres https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/environment/water/Pages/schools.aspx
- Commercial establishments serving food or drinks https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/environment/water/Pages/foodfacts.aspx
- Using water header tanks https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/environment/water/Pages/watertanks.aspx
- Swimming pools and spas https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/environment/water/Pages/pools.aspx