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Denton lifted its boil-water notice Saturday morning, although distribution efforts will continue as some residents deal with water availability issues in the wake of the past week’s winter storms.
The notice was initially issued due to a loss of water pressure at several locations throughout the city’s water distribution system, to below 20 pounds per square inch. City spokesperson Ryan Adams said pressure has since been restored and tests were completed to show the water is safe for consumption.
“There’s no evidence to show there was ever any contamination,” Adams said.
Out of caution, the city still recommends flushing ice makers, water fountains and taps prior to using them for drinking or cooking. Adams recommended flushing any taps for about a minute before use. Even after lifting the notice, the city also provided water to residents in need at the Civic Center on Saturday, beginning at 1 p.m. About 100 households had been supplied with water by 4 p.m.
Adams said the city doesn’t have exact figures on how many people may still be without water due to damaged water systems from the storm, but that it is expecting to receive shipments of water from the state and will continue to give it away at the Civic Center as long as there is supply. On Sunday, the center will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and the city posted on social media that 4,200 gallons of water are being delivered for distribution to people who need it.
Other locals have started water distribution efforts of their own, including Denton County Brewing Co. owner Seth Morgan and Bearded Monk owner Ben Esely. Several other local businesses and organizers joined them in the donation and distribution system, which kicked off Thursday.
Residents came by The Bearded Monk's drive-thru to receive — or donate — water. In total, Morgan estimated the brewing company had distributed about 2,700 gallons of water using its tank, with hundreds of cases of bottled water also doled out over the last few days.
“It’s been absolutely crazy,” Esely said. “You get one car coming through with a trunk full of water and the next person needs a trunk full of water.”
Saturday, Morgan said much of the remaining stock was committed to places like nursing homes and apartment complexes. He said it would likely be the last day the brewery hosts the large-scale giveaway, but that it would still be available to fill containers if people need clean water. Even with the boil-water notice lifted, he said there are many people in the area who may not have water access until next week.
“We had pipes break at our house too and we don’t have water — we can’t get parts to replace it until sometime next week, so I think a lot of people are in the same boat,” Morgan said. “We’ve had a lot of places who said the earliest they’ll have water is Monday or Tuesday, just because they can’t get people out to fix the pipes.”
In unincorporated Denton County between Denton and Krum, Kasie Cater said her neighborhood of a few hundred people has been without water since Tuesday, and has struggled to get updates from water provider Aqua Texas. She said the county has stepped in to examine the system after she contacted a county commissioner.
“Oddly enough, we never lost power, but the water company’s telling us that the pumps lost power,” Cater said. “The least I expect would be a base level of communication from the providers. … It’s infuriating.”
Cater said county emergency operations and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality examined the system and determined there were multiple leaks, but she still did not have water as of Saturday afternoon, without a clear timeline of when it might be available again.
Up-to-date information on Denton’s free water distribution can be found at cityofdenton.com/government/health-safety/inclement-weather.