Point’s Water-Quality Situation Now Resolved
The Alameda Point water that was contaminated with non-potable water last week has been deemed safe for drinking, cooking and bathing by the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) Division of Drinking Water. The Alameda Point do-not-drink advisory was lifted Friday.
The Alameda Police Department (APD) released a Nixle report stating, “The water once again matches the East Bay Municipal Utility District’s (EBMUD) high-quality water supply consistent with other areas outside of the Alameda Point water system.”
Alameda’s public information officer Sarah Henry shared a timeline of the events that led to the agency lifting the advisory notice. On Tuesday, Sept. 12, EBMUD flushed the water lines leading to the contaminated well and used a brownish dye to run tests on the water. EBMUD began taking additional samples to do a full battery of tests.
On Wednesday, tests continued to show improvement as the water-quality and bacteria samples came back clean. As a result, SWRCB lifted the advisory to avoid bodily contact with the water at Alameda Point. However, the do-not-drink advisory remained in place.
Water sample analyses continued last Thursday. Finally, on Friday, comprehensive tests of Alameda Point’s system came back negative for harmful contaminants. SWRCB lifted the remaining do-not-drink advisory. The control board stated it will continue to work with EBMUD and city staff to investigate the incident and make sure it does not happen again.
According to Henry, the problem was first noticed by Alameda Point residents Friday, Sept. 8. Residents began to call EBMUD describing the color and taste of their faucet water. Initial tests that day came back safe to drink. Tests continued throughout the weekend, which again came back safe for drinking.
However, on Tuesday, Sept. 12, EBMUD received more complaints about the water. They did another analysis of the water late in the afternoon and it showed the presence of contaminated water. EBMUD notified the city and the city notified RiverRock (the city’s property management company) and the Alameda Point Collaborative (APC). APC went door-to-door with an advisory for affected homes and businesses.
The city believes the source of the contaminated water was a result of a cross-connection between a potable drinking water line and a non-potable irrigation line.
The city conducted a three-day outreach effort to help residents and business owners with their water needs. The city set up portable shower stations at the Alameda Fire Department training facility at 431 Stardust Place. It also set up a bottled water pick-up station at the APC main office at 677 West Ranger Ave. The city received assistance from the Red Cross and Community Emergency Response Team volunteers.
The city set up a website, www.alamedaca.gov/waterfaq, that will answer frequently asked questions about the ordeal. The website was expected to go live this week. The city will also provide an update on the water system at Alameda Point at the City Council meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 3.