The Boil Water Advisory will remain in effect this week for Bracebridge municipal water customers until further notice, following a large water main break in the Wharf Road area.
BWA’s are issued when water quality is or may be compromised. The Boil Water Advisory was issued on Sunday, January 10, 2021, and will stay in effect this week until lifted by the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU). These provincial regulations are necessary to ensure the safety of the drinking water system and to protect the public from potential adverse health impacts.
Crews located a large water main located Sunday morning on Wharf Road adjacent to the Muskoka River that experienced a major failure late Saturday evening causing a loss of pressure across the entire water distribution system in the Town of Bracebridge. Crews responded immediately and worked through the night to locate and isolate the break, which was challenging due to its location and darkness.
Why is this main break affecting ALL municipal water customers in Bracebridge?
Water main failures are not uncommon and most cases can be isolated and repaired quickly, sometimes before customers experience a problem. This particular emergency was unique to the District given the large capacity of the water main and the significant extent to which it failed. As a result of the break, there was a complete loss of pressure throughout the Bracebridge water distribution system, which impacted all municipal water users throughout Town.
When this water main breakage occurred, resulting in significant impacts to pressure to all users, the drinking water system was considered unsafe for consumption in accordance with Provincial Regulations. As a result, the SMDHU issued a BWA until favourable test results are received, to protect the health and safety of our community.
What is the current status of water main repairs?
The District and contractors are repairing the water main and remain fully committed throughout the day and overnight to restoring service. Road closures and alternate routes have been established to ensure there are no interruptions, as restoration of water service is our top priority.
Water sampling is already underway and will be sent to accredited labs for testing. When final approval is given by the by SMDHU, the BWA can be lifted.
I am experiencing water pressure issues, others have full pressure. What do I do?
Although a BWA remains in effect, the majority of our community has access to running water. As the distribution system is restored, pressure throughout the Town of Bracebridge will continue to improve throughout today and the coming days. We appreciate your patience and are aware there are varying pressures throughout the Bracebridge water system which can be expected during this emergency.
Should I expect discoloured water?
The District is required to ‘flush’ the water distribution system as part of the procedures required by Regulation. When this is carried out, it is normal to experience discoloured water temporarily which may appear to be rust coloured. This is simply because the iron and other mineral deposits in the water mains come off during flushing activities.
When will the BWA be lifted? What steps are being taken to expedite the process?
At this time, the BWA is expected to be in effect until the end of this week. This time is required to make repairs, carry out flushing and to verify lab results. All efforts are being made with our community partners to expedite this process recognizing that businesses and residents are affected. Notification will be provided immediately upon receiving approval to lift the BWA as advised by the SMDHU.
I have specific questions about my situation. Who can I contact?
If you have questions relating to the Boil Water Advisory, please contact the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit District at 705-721-7520 or 1-877-721-7521 ext. 8811 or visit https://www.simcoemuskokahealth.org/Promos/bracebridgebwa