Boston Loses Clean Water

May 3, 2010 Updated: May 3, 2010

BOSTON—After a 10-foot water pipe broke in Weston on Saturday, May 1 the water supply to 29 communities to the east of Weston, including Boston and Arlington was gravely disrupted. Water leaking from the pipe was flowing at a rate of 8 million gallons per hour into the Charles River. Engineers and Massachusetts Water Resource Authority (MWRA) crews visited the site to assess the situation.

Universities in Boston, including Boston University, were placed on a water-use advisory, sending out mass emergency text messages, phone calls, and e-mails to their students.

“Due to a major water pipe break a Boil Water order has been issued by the state for drinking water in area communities including the Charles River Campus. Water will not be suitable for drinking unless it is boiled, but it can be used for bathing, flushing, and fire protection. More information will follow when available,” read a warning text message sent out to the Boston University population. University dining halls provided students with bottled water and placed signs on every water fountain, door, and in all buildings warning of the water emergency.

The latest update said that the pipe has been repaired, pressurized and put back into service. Despite the progress made, the MWRA update warns that communities should continue to observe the Boil Water advisory until notified otherwise.