‘Texas is basically less of a third world country’: Fury as schools are forced to close across Houston today and officials protect more than two million citizens across the city from power outages at purification plants Ordered to boil water before drinking after
- Water pressure dropped due to power cut at Eastern Water Treatment Plant
- Hours later, officials issued a boil water notice over fears of unsafe drinking water
- Texans angered by the timing of the announcement late Sunday blasted the city
Furious Texans have slammed city officials in Houston for issuing a boil water notice after a power outage at a purification plant.
More than two million residents were ordered to boil water before drinking or washing it because of low water pressure due to failures at an eastern water purification plant.
Public schools in the state’s largest city will remain closed today after an announcement late Sunday night as angry homeowners described Texas as a ‘less than third world country’.
The city of Houston posted about the new information on its social media accounts around 7 p.m. last night, nearly nine hours after the outage, leaving many residents concerned that they may have been drinking unsafe water all day.
More than two million residents were ordered to boil water before drinking or washing after a power failure at the East Water Purification Plant (pictured)
The City of Houston posted about the new notice on their social media accounts last night around 7 p.m.
The city said: ‘A Boil Water Notice has been issued for the City of Houston main water system (TX1010013).
‘Earlier today, Sunday, November 27 at 10.30 a.m. the water pressure at the East Water Purification Plant dropped to a minimum of 20 psi, according to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, during a power outage.
The public was advised not to boil any water for two minutes without allowing it to cool further or to use bottled water.
Officials said water pressure was restored shortly after the outage, but there is still concern that harmful bacteria may have entered the water system.
The notice is likely to remain in place at least until Tuesday morning so that more tests can be conducted.
Many criticized the timing and manner of the announcement, with residents forced to learn about the notice through social media
Many criticized the timing and manner of the announcement, with residents forced to learn of the notice via social media, saying Texas was ‘less than a third world country’.
One disgruntled homeowner said: ‘There should be some sort of warning system in place for these types of issues, similar to the Amber Alert. This is a potentially important public health issue.
Another said: ‘USA’s largest city issues boil water notice 9 hours late.’
Water samples will be taken in a laboratory within 18 hours to see if anything grows on them.
According to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) plan, the boil-water order will be canceled if nothing grows on the samples.
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said in the early hours of Monday: ‘Water samples will be taken later and hopefully we’ll have the clear from TCEQ.
Officials said water pressure was restored shortly after the outage, but there is still concern that harmful bacteria could enter the water system
‘The city has to wait 24 hours from that point before suspending the boiling water notice. The earliest will be tomorrow night or very early Tuesday morning.
Gov. Greg Abbott said he is directing the Texas Division of Emergency Management and the Texas Commission on the Environment to direct resources to address the water problem.
He added: ‘The State of Texas is responding quickly and is supporting Houston as they work to get their safe water supply online.
‘We have been in contact with Mayor Turner to offer the state’s full support, and we are currently working to meet the city’s request for a faster turnaround on water sample results.’
‘I thank TDEM and TCEQ for their rapid response to help resolve this issue. We urge those affected by the Boiling Water Notice to continue following the guidance of local authorities and take adequate precautions when boiling and using water.
‘Together, we will ensure that our fellow Texans are supported while the city’s water supply is restored.’
Houston Public Works serves approximately 2.2 million customers, while the Houston Independent School District, which is closing all its schools, offices and facilities today, serves 194,000 students.
In the winter storm of 2021, a notice was also issued to boil water.