Philadelphia officials are recommending residents use bottled drinking water following a chemical spill in the Delaware River that could potentially impact the water supply.
The City of Philadelphia sent out a phone alert to local residents on Sunday afternoon, saying that officials recommend using the bottled water from 2 p.m. local time Sunday “until further notice.”
“Contaminants have not been found in the system at this time but this is out of caution due to a spill in the Delaware River,” it said.
Michael Carroll, deputy managing director for the office of transportation, infrastructure and sustainability, said earlier Sunday that while contaminants hadn’t yet been found, there was no guarantee the water would remain pure for the “entire afternoon,” hence the alert, according to NBC Philadelphia.
Officials believe bathing and showering in the water is safe, Carroll said earlier Sunday, according to NBC Philadelphia.
If people have already drank tap water, they should not worry, Carroll added: “I want to reiterate that the health risks are very low if present at all. No acute effects are associated with low level exposure. Our best information is that people who ingest water will not suffer any near-term symptoms or acute medical conditions. We foresee no reason to seek medical attention related to this event.”
The alert comes after a pipe burst at Trinseo, a chemical plant in Bucks County, leading to a Friday night chemical spill that dumped about 8,100 gallons of “water soluble acrylic polymer solution,” a latex finishing material, into Otter Creek, a tributary to the Delaware River, NBC Philadelphia reported.
Drinking water supplier Aqua Pennsylvania said in a statement that the company “immediately shut down the intake to our Bristol water system as soon as we learned of the chemical spill, preventing customer exposure to hazardous materials.
“As a result of their fast action, we are not seeing any of the chemicals from the spill in our drinking water,” the statement continued.
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