A boil water noticed issued Thursday by the Comox Valley Regional District for parts of the Comox Valley has been lifted.
The Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD) and Island Health said after regular sampling and monitoring of Comox Valley water system, they are able to confirm the that water quality in the system is safely within provincial drinking water guidelines.
The areas affected by the boil water notice were Courtenay, Comox, and the Comox Valley, Sandwick, Arden, Marsden/Camco, Greaves Crescent, and England Road water local service areas. The CVRD is recommending residents run all cold-water faucets and drinking fountains for one minute before consuming the water.
The water that supplies the Comox Valley water system originates in Comox Lake and is taken from the Puntledge River and delivered to approximately 45,000 residents.
The CVRD said BC Hydro has shut down the penstock until Jan. 5 to complete improvements to the Puntledge diversion dam fish screens. The work was originally scheduled in December but was postponed to provide greater flexibility to assist with flood mitigation.
As a result, the regional district is utilizing its backup pump station downstream from the BC Hydro generating station in the Puntledge River where water quality can be poorer during extreme wet weather events. The heavy rainfall had caused turbidity levels at the backup pump station to rise above acceptable thresholds, which has led to the boil water notice.
The federal government and the provincial government have committed $62.8 million for a new drinking water treatment system in the Comox Valley Regional District.
It will draw water directly from Comox Lake, upstream of the BC Hydro Penstock, avoiding any potential service disruptions during maintenance of hydro infrastructure, the CVRD said. Construction of the new water treatment plant is scheduled to begin late in 2019 and be fully operational by 2021.