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Hawaii officials, military set plans to return drinking water to joint base

Hawaii officials, military set plans to return drinking water to joint base
Aerial view of Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in Honolulu, taken on July 1, 2016. The Interagency Drinking Water System Team in Hawaii announced on Friday a new process for drinking water flushing, sampling and testing to resolve concerns after a jet fuel spill last year near the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. File Photo by Ace Rheaume/U.S. Navy/UPI | License Photo

Jan. 14 (UPI) -- The Interagency Drinking Water System Team in Hawaii announced on Friday a new process for drinking water flushing, sampling and testing to resolve concerns after a jet fuel spill last year near the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.

The team, made up of the Hawaii Department of Health, the Environmental Protection Agency, Army and the U.S. Navy, formed in December to come up with a plan to restore safe drinking water to the housing communities around the base.

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Officials said the process will hopefully lead to a more complete understanding of the steps and timing being taken at each step of the process.

"Under this approach, we are ensuring that the drinking water testing is as thorough as possible, so residents can feel reassured that the water used by their families is fully safe," EPA Region 9 Administrator Martha Guzman said in a statement.

Complete flushing will take approximately 12 to 17 days.

"We're grateful for all federal, state and local partners and none more so than the EPA and Hawaii Department of Health," Navy Capt. Miguel Dieguez said in a statement. "Their diligent reviews and uncompromising testing should give everyone confidence in the process to deliver safe water and get residents back in the homes."

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