Updated: San Marco Boil Water Notice Lifted

Nov 28, 2016

Credit WJXT

Update 10:00 a.m. After two successful water quality tests, JEA lifted the boil water notice Tuesday night. 

The bacteriological survey showed water is safe to drink, but it's recommended customers flush water lines for three minutes after water returns to remove any air and possible sediments from the lines.

JEA originally planned to repair the water main, but upon further inspection, crews have decided to replace the entire section of the pipe and "reposition it to prevent further breaks," JEA Spokeswoman Gerri Boyce said in an email. "Since this is now a project and not just a repair, the timeline has been lengthened."

A water main break off Landon Avenue in Jacksonville’s San Marco neighborhood left many residents with little to no water Sunday night.

As of Monday morning, most homes had water pressure restored. But residents could be under a boil-water advisory until at least Wednesday.

A 24-inch pipe suffered a substantial split late Sunday evening, and the cause of the break is still unknown, JEA spokeswoman Gerri Boyce said.

“The causes could be anything from the ground shifting after a lot of rain, it can be hit or bored by construction crews, and sometimes the pipes just fail,” she said.

Boyce said JEA was aware of the problem very quickly because a San Marco water plant’s water pressure dramatically plunged from the average 40 to 50 pounds per square inch to just 10 psi. More than 200 customers called JEA to report problems within the first 90 minutes.

Through water rerouting, most San Marco residents saw pressure return to normal in the wee hours of Monday morning. But they’re being asked to boil water for at least one minute before cooking, showering or drinking.

Boyce said JEA will test water Monday and Tuesday. If both tests come back clean, the advisory will be lifted.

“If one of the tests come back with any questionable results, then we have to perform two more so we can get two consecutive [clean tests],” she said.

Water advisories are issued when a pipe bursts because it’s possible for dirt and bacteria to enter the system. Boyce said repairs to the water main are “ongoing.”

JEA is in charge of more than 3,000 miles of water piping in Clay, Duval and Nassau Counties.

Residents can report a water outage or check on the status of repairs on JEA’s website.

Reporter Ryan Benk can be reached at rbenk@wjct.org, at (904) 358 6319 or on Twitter @RyanMichaelBenk.