Residential and business guidelines for Austintown and Canfield - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

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Residential and business guidelines for Austintown and Canfield boil alert

Posted: Updated:
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -

The Mahoning County District Board of Health has issued guidelines for residents and businesses impacted by the boil water alert in Canfield and Austintown Townships.

The alert is in effect for customers of the Youngstown Water Department in those areas until further notice.  Water department officials did not expect results on the first test to be returned until late Monday, so the boil alert could remain in effect until Tuesday.

Water officials stress that the alert has been issued strictly as a precautionary measure in the aftermath of Sunday night's water outage caused by a breakdown at the Webb Road pumping station.

Resident Guidelines

 In general, a boil advisory means that all water to be used for cooking, drinking or cleaning food should be brought to a rolling boil for at least one minute prior to use. Allow water to cool as necessary depending on use.

If a loss of water service is experienced or a boil advisory is issued, please follow these guidelines to ensure one's health and safety. Carefully assess all parts of your home that require water. The following list outlines safeguards as well as some helpful hints:

1. Drinking Water

· Use boiled or bottled water. To improve the flat taste of boiled water, aerate it by pouring it back and forth from one container to another and allow it to stand for a few hours.

· It is best to buy prepackaged beverage products for use.

Water filtering units may not remove all contaminants.

2. Ice Machines

· Consult manufacturer for any ice machines connected to refrigeration.

3. Preparing, Cooking, or Reconstituting Food

· Use boiled or bottled water only. Discard all food that may have been prepared before a water interruption or boil advisory.

When in doubt, throw it out!

4. Thawing Food

· Thaw food only in a refrigerator or part of the cooking process.

5. Washing Produce

· Use boiled or bottled water to wash produce. Consider using bagged, pre-washed, ready-to-eat produce, frozen, or canned produce.

6. Hand Washing for the Homeowner

· Use boiled or bottled water from an alternative source.

7. Cleaning and Sanitizing of Tableware, Kitchenware Components and Food Contact Surfaces

· Use boiled or bottled water for all cleaning. Do not use dishwasher. Hot water or chemical sanitizer may not be adequate if the water is contaminated with parasites.

Sanitize all food counter surfaces and equipment after boil advisory is lifted.

8. Health Conditions

· For any questions or concerns regarding health conditions in relations to water and preventive care please consult your physician.

After the water interruption is lifted by the water department:

· Flush the home's water lines for at least two minutes

· Clean faucet screens

· Clean the water line strainers on mechanical dishwashing machines and similar equipment

· Purge all water-using fixtures and appliances of standing water (ice machines, beverage makers, hot water heaters, etc)

Business Guidelines

In general, a boil advisory means that all water to be used for cooking, hand washing, drinking or cleaning food contact equipment should be brought to a rolling boil for at least one minute prior to use. Allow water to cool as necessary depending on use. Signs must be posted on equipment to instruct employees of proper safeguards.

If a water interruption or boil advisory is issued or a loss of water service is experienced, any operation that prepares, cooks, or cleans foods should follow these guidelines to ensure the health and safety of its customers. Carefully assess all parts of your operation that require water. Change the menu, if necessary.

If you cannot arrange to have the proper safeguards available,

then it is recommended to temporarily cease operation until potable (safe) water is provided to cook, clean, serve and wash hands.

The following list outlines safeguards as well as some helpful hints:

Alternatives not stated below should be pre-approved by the Mahoning County District Board of Health.

1. Drinking Water

· Use boiled or bottled water. To improve the flat taste of boiled water, aerate it by pouring it back and forth from one container to another and allow it to stand for a few hours.

Water filtering units may not remove all contaminants.

2. Beverage Machines or Beverage Dispenser "Guns" Connected to Waterlines

· Shut off water to the machines and post signs. It is best to buy prepackaged products for consumer use.

Flush the lines on beverage machines thoroughly after the advisory is lifted. Sanitize lines if necessary.

3. Ice Machines

· Turn off the water and unplug the ice machine. Get rid of current ice in ice machines and ice bins. Buy bagged ice from an approved supplier.

Flush the lines for the ice machine thoroughly after the advisory is lifted. Sanitize lines and inside machine.

4. Preparing, Cooking or Reconstituting food

· Use boiled or bottled water only. Discard all food that may have been prepared during a water interruption or boil advisory. Use GLOVES for handling ready-to-eat foods.

When in doubt, throw it out!

5. Thawing Food

· Thaw food only in a refrigerator, microwave, or as part of the cooking process.

6. Washing Produce/Produce Sprayers

· Use only boiled or bottled water to wash produce. Disconnect all produce sprayers in grocery/retail areas. Consider using bagged, pre-washed, ready-to-eat produce, frozen, or canned produce.

Flush the lines of the produce sprayer thoroughly after the advisory is lifted. Sanitize lines if necessary.

7. Dipper Wells

· Turn off water and post signs.

Sanitize all dipper wells after boil advisory is lifted.

8. Cleaning and Sanitizing of Tableware, Kitchenware, Vending Machine Components and Food Contact Surfaces

· Use boiled or bottled water for all compartments of a three-compartment sink. Do not use dish machine. Hot water or chemical sanitizer may not be adequate if the water is contaminated with parasites. Set up Bucket Sanitizer at 100-200 ppm Chlorine or 200 ppm Quaternary Ammonium utilizing bottled or boiled water

Sanitize all food contact surfaces and equipment after the boil advisory is lifted.

9. Hand Washing for Employees and the Public

· Use boiled or bottled water from an alternative source.

NOTE:

An average size business will need to have at least 200 gallons of potable water available per day to operate. There may be circumstances where available alternatives are not sufficient to provide acceptable public health protection. Menu diversity, sales volume, number of employees and other factors can make it impossible to provide sufficient and suitable alternatives necessary for keeping the operation open. Although employees may be expected to take the extra effort necessary for improvising and for using less convenient alternatives during a short interruption in the water supply, it is not practical to expect them to continue safe practices over time if it is not convenient to do so. When safe, sufficient and practical alternatives are not available, it will be necessary to cease food operations until the boil advisory is lifted.

After the water interruption is lifted by the water department:

· Flush the building's water lines for at least five minutes

· Clean faucet screens

· Clean the water line strainers on mechanical dishwashing machines and similar equipment

· Purge all water-using fixtures and appliances of standing water (ice machines, beverage makers, hot water heaters, etc)

· Turn on ice machines and run 1-2 cycles. Discard the ice, then clean and sanitize the ice bins

· Clean and sanitize all fixtures, sinks and equipment connected to the waterlines

For questions, please call the Mahoning County District Board of Health Food Safety Program at

(330) 270-2855, menu option #2.

 

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