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RAF MILDENHALL, England – Residents and workers at RAF Feltwell are being advised to boil tap water after a possible contamination of the water system during maintenance.

Maintenance to the system April 9-10 caused a drop in water pressure, said officials from the 48th Fighter Wing, which has oversight of Feltwell.

According to a release Friday that announced the warning, a drop in pressure can allow contaminants to enter the water supply. Officials advised residents of the base to boil tap water for at least one minute before drinking or using it for brushing teeth, washing dishes, preparing food or making ice.

During the two days of maintenance, workers routed clean water to residents at Feltwell. However, an official with the fighter wing said Feltwell was receiving untested water after work was completed on April 10.

Officials said a test of the water’s safety was performed Thursday and the results, which came back Friday, showed no contamination. A second water sample was taken Friday and results should be available Saturday.

The boil warning, however, was not issued until noon on Friday and appeared on the RAF Lakenheath Facebook page, which publishes announcements for both bases.

The delay in announcing the warning drew criticism.

Commenting on Facebook, one person asked, “I wonder if I can go back in time and boil the water my family has already consumed?”

Officials apologized for the delay in publicizing the notice and said they were examining communication between agencies.

“In the unlikely event that the secondary results come back positive for contamination, residents should continue to boil their water until further notice,” officials wrote.

Questions can be directed to Bioenvironmental Engineering at 01638-52-8047.

mathis.adam@stripes.com


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