The Cariboo Regional District has lifted the Lac La Hache water system boil water advisory on the evening of Tuesday, Sept. 6.
Interior Health gave the all-clear to resume normal water use after the three required water samples came back negative Tuesday afternoon.
Al Richmond, director for electoral Area G said the drinking water officer required three consecutive clean tests before lifting the order.
The CRD expected the test results last week.
The sample taken last Wednesday came back clear but those taken on Monday and Tuesday were late arriving at the lab in Kelowna and were no longer viable as they need to be tested within a certain time frame.
The staff took new samples on Friday and Saturday, driving them to Vancouver as the Kelowna lab does not test on the weekend.
The results of these tests were received just after 4 p.m. Sept. 6.
Richmond said the source of the contamination was isolated to one street but as the system has been in use since the 70s it could have been some build-up in a pipe that didn’t move when the system was flushed.
“The standard treatment is chlorinating the system. In this case, we did the whole system as really it’s hard to do just one street, because it wasn’t in the well and it wasn’t in the reservoir,” said Richmond, adding that a boil water advisory cannot be put on a single street.
He said it is likely that something was in the pipe for a number of years, perhaps a slight low spot in the pipe causing coliform to grow.
The main in the affected street dead-ends rather than running in a loop so staff may need to change that. Richmond said this might improve the flow and prevent future buildup.
However, he said they are still looking at other options to address the issue.
Richmond did a radio interview Tuesday morning, posters have been put up at the store and post office, and the CRD has reached out to media to spread the word.
The CRD offered their thanks to the community for their patience during the advisory.