Ida aftermath: Boil water notice affecting 250,000 NJ residents lifted

WOODLAND PARK, New Jersey (WABC) -- More than 250,000 New Jersey residents can once again drink the water directly from the faucets in their homes as a boil water notice was lifted Friday.

The Passaic Valley Water Commission issued the advisory on September 2 after torrential rainfall produced by Hurricane Ida caused water run-off to overflow and contaminate the 52-million-gallon New Street Reservoir.

During the notice, officials distributed vouchers for residents to purchase water and many went door to door and used robocalls to make sure everyone knew where to get water.

At least 31 people were killed in New Jersey as a result of widespread flooding.

MORE: What to do during a boil water advisory

At a briefing Friday, PVWC interim Business Administrator Louis Amodio said it was a crisis that could have been avoided.

"We need to replace our open finished water reservoirs with enclosed tanks," Amodio said.

Amodio said a small group of people oppose the change "because of aesthetic concerns."

Amodio noted that just six open finished water reservoirs remain in use in the U.S. and five of them are in New Jersey.

"We know that we cannot treat these open reservoirs with the necessary corrosion control inhibitors that will stop the leaching of the lead into the water lines. We also know that these water lines that are lead must be replaced," Amodio said.

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