CHICAGO (CBS) — Residents of a south suburb are forced to boil their water after the cold weather caused three water main breaks.
Walter Ladalski is among the 1,700 South Chicago Heights water customers who must now boil their water before drinking, bathing, cooking and washing dishes.
“I don’t want to take any chances — you don’t know what’s floating in there,” Ladalski said.
The village issued the boil order after three water pipes — including the main one that sits below the town reservoir — burst Tuesday morning. This left homeowners without water for several hours and forced some businesses to shut down until the order is lifted.
“When the weather gets that far below zero, it can cause the water to freeze and [the pipes] rupture,” said Catherine Linan, who is a South Chicago Heights Village clerk.
Three additional pipes froze and burst Wednesday morning.
Crews spent the day making repairs.
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Village officials say when water pipes break, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requires testing the drinking water for bacteria. While the village took samples Tuesday, the boil order will remain in affect until the results are in.
“All water must be boiled for their own safety and their own concern until the boil water advisory has been lifted,” said Nora Martinez-Gomez, who is the South Chicago Heights Village administrator.
The results are expected to be in on Thursday. If all is well, they will lift the boil order.