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Portland Water Bureau

From forest to faucet, we deliver the best drinking water in the world.

GENERAL INFORMATION: 503-823-7404

1120 SW Fifth Ave, Suite 600, Portland, OR 97204

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NEWS RELEASE 06/04/14: Annual Drinking Water Quality Report Released Online

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Official News Release

2014 Drinking Water Quality ReportAs mandated by the federal government, the Portland Water Bureau is required to produce an annual water quality report. The report summarizes the water quality results for 2013, and educates customers about their drinking water.

Once again, instead of mailing the full report to every customer, the Portland Water Bureau is releasing the report online as allowed by new guidelines. Water providers are still required to notify customers of the report’s availability, and a postcard is being mailed this week to inform every customer about the online report. This is a benefit to our customers and the environment.

Customers are still able to request a paper copy, either online or by phone.

Because we have water users whose first language is not English, translations of the report in Russian, Vietnamese, Chinese and Spanish are also available online or by calling Portland Water Bureau Water Line at 503-823-7525.

“I hope everyone takes a moment to read the report online. This information is extremely important,” said Water Bureau Administrator David Shaff. “Delivering high quality drinking water to our customers is the Water Bureau’s top priority. This report details what goes into delivering water to your tap.”

The report is available online at: www.portlandoregon.gov/water/waterqualityreport  

Water Quality
Portland Water Bureau

MEDIA ADVISORY 06/02/14: Portland Water Bureau to Demonstrate Earthquake Resistant Pipe

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Official Media Advisory 

WHEN: Tomorrow, Tuesday, June 3, 2014, from 10:00 AM to 12 Noon.

WHAT: A Portland Water Bureau demonstration and installation of an innovative Earthquake Resistant Ductile Iron pipe (ERDI) with moveable joints. Onsite will be representatives of the Kubota Corp., the pipe manufacturer, and representatives of a number of Oregon, Washington, and Vancouver, BC, drinking water providers.

WHERE: SW Council Crest Drive, between SW Patrick Way and SW McDonnell Terrace (West Hills near landslide hazard area). Meet in Healy Park. 

WHY:  The Portland Water Bureau is investigating ERDI pipe in response to the recommendation of the Oregon Resiliency Plan to improve the ability of the water system to remain usable after a seismic event. ERDI pipe has joints that allow the pipe to elongate or contract as the joints flex during seismic events and other earth movements, such as landslides. 

The Portland Water Bureau has two pilot projects to evaluate the installation of the ERDI pipe. At the SW Council Crest Drive location, the bureau is installing 585 feet of 8-inch diameter pipe.  The second location, where 845 feet of 6-inch and 8-diameter pipe has already been installed, is on SW Northwood Avenue near SW Hessler Avenue.

The Water Bureau chose to use the GENEX brand of Kubota Corp. pipe for its pilot project.

No U.S. pipe company is currently manufacturing ERDI pipe. The GENEX pipe has a 45-year history of zero failures in earthquakes in Japan. Kubota Corp. provided the tools and onsite training to Water Bureau staff on how to install it. The cost of the pipe order is $140,000.

The briefing will start promptly at 10:00 AM in Healy Park on Council Crest Drive.

For more information, contact Tim Hall, Public Information, at 503-823-6926, or 503-381-0056.

Powell Butte Nature Park Road and Parking Lot Open for Weekend Use Only Starting Saturday, May 31

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  Powell Butte Nature Park’s main entry road to the upper parking lot will be open to park visitors for weekend use only starting Saturday, May 31 and Sunday, June 1. The lot will be again open on June 7 and 8, and June 14 and 15. The weekday closure are necessary to allow construction crews to complete the contract-required rebuilding and repaving of the roadway into the park.

The road on SE 162nd Avenue and SE Powell Boulevard will reopen for everyday use starting Saturday, June 21 when the road construction is completed.

Also on the weekends, the restrooms in the publicly-required new park Visitor Center will be open. During weekend visits, park users are asked to use caution and drive slowly over the loose gravel when traveling up the main road into the park.

There is still some finishing work and planting left to be completed -- delayed in part by the much earlier than forecasted wet weather last year that slowed progress. Park visitors are reminded – for their safety – to keep out of fenced construction areas and to stay on open park trails. The alternate parking locations around Powell Butte will remain available.

The Water Bureau appreciates the public cooperation and patience. An exciting, improved park is coming!

Tim Hall
Public Information

News Release 05/24/14: Tap Water is Safe to Drink; Boil Water Notice Ends

Tap water is safe to drink: Boil Water Notice Ends

Portland,OR-  As of 11:00 AM Saturday May 24, 2014, the Boil Water Notice issued on May 23, 2014 is lifted. Tap water is safe to drink for all customers of the Portland Water Bureau. Customers of the Burlington, City of Gresham (North of I-84), Lake Grove, Lorna Water, Palatine Hill, Rockwood, Tigard Water Service Area (including Durham, King City and Bull Mountain), Valley View, and West Slope Water Districts may now drink tap water without boiling it first. 

Follow-up testing of drinking water has shown the absence of bacterial contamination. The Portland Water Bureau recommends flushing all taps for 2 minutes or until the water runs cold before consuming for the first time. This will flush any potentially contaminated water from the plumbing.

The Portland Water Bureau issued a ‘Boil Water Notice’ on May 23, 2014 in response to bacterial contamination detected at three locations in its system. All customers of the Portland Water Bureau and Burlington, City of Gresham (North of I-84), Lake Grove, Lorna Water, Palatine Hill, Rockwood, Tigard Water Service Area (including Durham, King City and Bull Mountain), Valley View, and West Slope Water Districts were affected.

Tests conducted throughout the affected area since the notice was issued were clear of contamination. As a precaution, the Portland Water Bureau will be draining and cleaning Reservoirs 1 and 5. An investigation into determining the source of contamination is ongoing. The reservoirs will be put back into service once it is determined to be safe to do so. The Portland Water Bureau thanks customers for their cooperation and understanding during the boil water notice. While the contamination was likely minimal, the health and safety of customers is the first priority of the bureau. The Portland Water Bureau consulted closely with the Oregon Health Authority – Drinking Water Services and the Multnomah County Health Officer to ensure that all state and federal health procedures were followed and standards were maintained.

Please share this information with all the other people who drink this water, especially those who may not have received this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses). You can do this by posting this notice in a public place or distributing copies by hand or mail.

For more information visit www.portlandoregon.gov/water, https://www.facebook.com/PortlandWaterBureau, @portlandwater, or call the Water Bureau Customer Service line at (503) 823-7770.

 

Understanding the Boil Water Notice Process

The Portland Water Bureau followed regulated procedures for reporting a positive total coliform and/or E. coli sample and issuing a Boil Water Notice.

The Water Bureau must report the results of any water samples that test positive for the presence of bacteria to the Oregon Health Authority Drinking Water Services (OHA). The bureau is then required to take several samples around the site and re-test. The test takes about 18 hours to show results. If either the first or second test comes back positive for the presence of E.coli, the OHA may order the Water Bureau to issue a Boil Water Notice. The Portland Water Bureau cannot issue a Boil Water Notice without the authorization from the OHA.

If the second test sample comes back ‘clean’, or free of bacteria, then a Boil Water Notice is not ordered by OHA.

The water quality incident of the week of May 19 was very unusual. In three regularly scheduled water samples, sampled from three different locations, the sample tested positive for E. coli. Following is the chronology of water quality incidents of the week of May 19, 2014.

Date: Wednesday May 21, 2014

Sample site: Reservoir 1 in Mt. Tabor Park

Results of a routine water sample taken Tuesday, May 20, collected at the outlet of Reservoir 1 in Mt.Tabor Park, came in early Wednesday May 21. The results tested positive for the presence of E. coli and total coliform bacteria. The bureau notified the OHA, which directed the City to take repeat samples. The results of the repeat samples came in Thursday morning and were all clear. OHA did not require any additional action from the Portland Water Bureau.

Date: Thursday May 22, 2014

Sample site: SE 2nd Avenue and Salmon Street Water Quality Sampling Station

Results of a routine water sample taken Wednesday, May 21, collected at the SE 2nd Avenue and Salmon Street Water Quality Sampling Station, came in early Thursday May 22. The results tested positive for the presence of E. coli and total coliform bacteria. The bureau notified the OHA, which again directed the City to take repeat samples. The results of the repeat samples came in Friday morning and were all clear. On Thursday, OHA did not require any additional action from the Portland Water Bureau.

Date: Friday May 23, 2014

Sample site: Reservoir 5 at Mt. Tabor Park

Results of a routine water sample taken Thursday, May 22, collected at the outlet of Reservoir 5 in Mt. TaborPark, came in early Friday. The results tested positive for the presence of E. coli and total coliform bacteria. The bureau notified the OHA, which directed the City to take repeat samples. At that time, OHA also ordered the Portland Water Bureau to issue a Boil Water Notice as a precautionary measure.

If the re-samples taken at Reservoir 5 atMt.Tabor Park and additional surveillance samples collected throughout the system come back ‘clean’ on Saturday May 24, the Boil Water Notice can be lifted for Portland Water Bureau customers.