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09/18/99 09:35:47 PMHurricane Floyd Has Knocked Out The Main Water Treatment Plant For The Area; We Face Prolonged Problems Before Repairs Can Be Implemented; Do Not Drink The Water Without Boiling For At Least Three Minutes; Conserve Use Of Water In All Respects; Current Supplies And Pressures Are Precariously Low - Public Will Be Notified Soon From Elizabethtown Water Company Soon Of All Procedures To Take and Other Impacts.
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From: EWC (Elizabethtown Water Company, Westfield)
To: Horace Corbin, The Westfield Leader Newspaper: 9/19/99 Time: 10:50 AM
ELIZABETHTOWN WATER COMPANY PRESS CONFERENCE
WESTFIELD, NJ - September 19, 1999 - There will be a press conference at the entrance to the Raritan-Millstone Water Treatment Plant at 2 p.m. on Sunday, September 19 to update the press on the status of the plant closure. After the prepared remarks, escorted tours will be offered to anyone wishing to photograph or take video footage of the site.
On Friday, September 17, flooding of the Raritan River forced Elizabethtown Water Company and its subsidiaries, to issue a boil water warning and to close its primary water treatment plant.
In order to maintain water pressure for fire protection, the Company urges all customers stop using water for all nonessential purposes immediately. Elizabethtown may begin a program of shutting off water service to its large business and industrial users under its general metered service tariff. This program will go into effect unless there is a drastic reduction in water usage.
We are contacting our largest customers to ask for their support in voluntarily shutting down. Otherwise, pursuant to public utility statutes and in order to protect the public health and safety, we will be forced to shut off water service to these customers.
All water used for drinking, cooking, brushing teeth, etc., should be boiled for three minutes before consumption. Immuno-compromised persons, such as persons undergoing chemotherapy, persons who have undergone organ transplants, persons with HIV/AIDS or other immune system disorders, should exercise additional caution with their drinking water.
It is still not clear at this time when service will be restored at the treatment plant. Elizabethtown's other water sources will remain operating to cover essential water uses, including fire protection. Another press release will be sent as more information becomes available.
Elizabethtown Water Company serves 213,000 business and residential customers in
54 municipalities in Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Morris, Somerset and Union counties.