WQA offers drinking water resources during floods
Heavy rains breach dams in Michigan, cause record flooding in Midwest and result in flash flood watches as they move into Southeast
LISLE, Ill. (May 20, 2020) – Flood resources, including a video called “Five Things to Know About Water After a Flood,” are available from the Water Quality Association to help ensure a safer water supply during severe flooding in the Midwest that is expected to move into the Southeastern United States this week.
As much as 8 inches of rain in Michigan the last few days, plus heavy runoffs, pushed rivers to record levels and breached two dams, causing 10,000 people in central Michigan to evacuate their homes. Days of heavy rain also caused flooding in northwestern Indiana, Illinois (including the Chicago area), Ohio and other states. Flash flood watches have been issued in regions of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia as the rains move across the area in the next few days, with the National Weather Service predicting western North Carolina faces the greatest threat.
“Extensive flooding is always a concern, especially for residents on private well supplies,” said Eric Yeggy, WQA Technical Affairs Director. “Homeowners who get their water from municipal water systems should be alert for any instructions issued by their local officials.”
In the flood video, Yeggy offers five quick tips on ensuring quality drinking water during flooding or when power outages affect filtration systems. It is one of several consumer information pieces available on WQA’s flood resources page.
Well owners affected by the storm are encouraged to test their systems and seek appropriate remedies as soon as possible. During and after flooding, water can become contaminated with microorganisms such as bacteria, sewage, heating oil, agricultural or industrial waste, chemicals and other substances that can cause serious illness.
Residents on public water supplies should be alert for local boil water orders. Flooding can cause disruptions with a municipal water source, prompting officials to issue boil water orders in many communities. A WQA guide to boil water order notices can be found here.
The safety of a home’s water supply, whether private or municipal, may be affected by power outages. If there are any concerns about the quality of one’s water, WQA recommends residents use bottled water for drinking and cooking until they know their tap water is safe.
WQA is a not-for-profit trade association representing the residential, commercial, and industrial water treatment industry. WQA’s education and professional certification programs have been providing industry-standardized training and credentialing since 1977. The WQA Gold Seal certification program has been certifying products that contribute to the safe consumption of water since 1959. The WQA Gold Seal program is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Standards Council of Canada (SCC).