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Flint residents ordered to boil water after water main break

By Ed Adamczyk Follow @adamczyk_ed Contact the Author   |   Feb. 10, 2016 at 7:23 AM

FLINT, Mich., Feb. 10 (UPI) -- Residents of Flint, Mich., already filtering their tap water to remove toxic lead elements, were advised also to boil it after a water main break.

Water pressure fell after pipes cracked, and the resulting drop in water pressure may have allowed bacterial contamination to occur, a warning from the city told residents. The advisory Tuesday is regarded as a precautionary, temporary measure and is expected to be lifted when testing indicates the water is safe.

"As a precautionary measure, do not drink the water without boiling it first. Bring all filtered water to a boil, let it boil for one minute, and let it cool before using, or use bottled water ... Boiling kills bacteria and other organisms in the water," a municipal warning said.

The quality of the city's drinking water came into question in 2015 after the source of the water supply was changed the Flint River. It was determined, the water was responsible for corrosion issues in the city's lead pipes, and residents were drinking and using lead-contaminated water. As residents use donated bottled water to drink, the crisis has become a standoff between the economically hard-hit city and the Republican governor and state legislature.

The order to boil water came as Mayor Karen Weaver announced $55 million will be needed to replace lead pipes in Flint. She asked Gov. Rick Snyder to partner with her to find the funding, saying, "In order for Flint residents to once again have confidence and trust in the water coming from their faucets, all lead pipes in the city of Flint need to be replaced."

Anna Heaton, the governor's press secretary, said the legislature will be asked for an additional $195 million to help correct Flint's water problems in a 2016-17 budget proposal Snyder is expected to present Wednesday.

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