One month later, people in Sachs Harbour still avoiding fuel-contaminated tap water

·1 min read
A do-not-consume advisory for drinking water in Sachs Harbour, N.W.T., has been lifted in a handful of locations in the community. Meanwhile, tap water remains unsafe to drink for many.  (Ivanoh Demers/Radio-Canada - image credit)
A do-not-consume advisory for drinking water in Sachs Harbour, N.W.T., has been lifted in a handful of locations in the community. Meanwhile, tap water remains unsafe to drink for many. (Ivanoh Demers/Radio-Canada - image credit)

A do-not-consume advisory for drinking water in Sachs Harbour, N.W.T., has been lifted in a handful of locations in the community of about 100.

Meanwhile, tap water remains unsafe to drink for many, and there's still no explanation of what happened.

The do-not-consume order first went into effect four weeks ago, on March 23, after the territory's chief public health officer reported a fuel smell and an oily sheen in water deliveries.

Those deliveries resumed at the start of April, with people in homes affected by potentially contaminated water being asked to have their water tanks drained, cleaned and refilled.

In a news release Wednesday, the N.W.T.'s Department of Health and Social Services said water has been tested and determined safe in the following locations:

  • Sachs Harbour Health Centre

  • RCMP Detachment

  • Ryan & Chelsea Lucas's home

  • Ajgaliaq Recreational Complex

  • Sachs Harbour Community Corp.

  • NWT Housing Office

The do-not-consume advisory remains in effect elsewhere in the community.

"If you still smell fuel at the water taps in your home, it is recommended that you flush your sink drains with some soap and water," a news release reads. "If an odour persists, please contact the community government."

The news release includes a link to a fact sheet from the state of New York on gasoline in drinking water, but offers no explanation for how fuel may have ended up in the community's water supply.

The fact sheet warns there are health risks to people who drink gasoline-contaminated water, and that those risks vary depending on the individual and how much of the contaminant they drank.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting