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Daily Item NAHANT - The town of Nahant jumped Sunday on the opportunity to provide residents with clean, bottled water in the wake of the water main break that has caused a boil-water order for 30 communities. Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, in conjunction with the Massachusetts National Guard, made available enough water to provide one gallon of water for each resident. Nahant received nearly 4,000 gallons for more than 3,700 residents.
Customers were lined up around the block Sunday as, from left, Nahant fireman Patrick Carritte, Naional Guardsman Ashley Soulard, Lt. Tom Hutton of theb Nahant Police and National Guardsman Sgt. Michael Palmer ³We have been in direct contact since yesterday distribute water outside the Nahant Fire Station. (Item Photos / Reba M. Saldanha) with MEMA and the MWRA, working with a solution to the problem to be able to provide drinking water to the public,´ Nahant Police Sergeant Stephen Shultz said. ³We were on a conference call last night with Governor Patrick as well as the director of the MWRA. They told us that drinking water supply would be available and all we had to do was basically sign up and acknowledge the fact that we do want the supply. We jumped on. We know we have a lot of elderly residents and residents with children that it concerns, so we wanted to make sure they were taken care of.´ Residents said that the water contamination has not been a problem for them, though it has changed the way that they have had to live their everyday lives. ³So far it hasn¶t been a problem. The main thing is that in the normal day to day to remember not to use the water,´ John Curtis said. ³I think everybody knows that you¶re just not supposed to drink it, but how much can you actually use the water?´ The Massachusetts Water Resources Authority has a list on their website which states that tap water should not be used for drinking, food preparation, mixing baby formula, making ice, washing food, manual utensil and equipment washing, brushing teeth or any other activity that may involve water consumption. ³It is not too bad. It¶s tough because you go to brush your teeth and you kind of just forget, it¶s kind of like when you¶re out of electricity, you just go to turn the lights on,´ resident Sue Rosa said. ³So far it hasn¶t been too bad but if it is going to go a few days it¶s going to be tough. You don¶t realize how easy it is to go to the faucet to get a drink of water or just to brush your teeth. You don¶t realize how easy you have it until it¶s too late.´
Although there are reports that crews should be able to finish repairs to the major pipe that burst on Saturday in Weston, the water will be tested to make sure it is safe and there is currently no clear date as to when the boil water order will be lifted. ³We are a family that drinks bottled water, so we don¶t use tap water at all, just for health reasons and things,´ resident Vicky Waite said. ³I don¶t think, in the long term, we know how long this is going to take or what¶s going to happen. I think even once it is repaired it¶s going to be a while before it gets through the system and everybody is O.K. with everything and we can go back to doing things normally. We will survive by it.´ The Town of Saugus will be providing their residents with bottled water on Monday beginning at 8 a.m. at the Saugus Emergency Management Building, 12 Hamilton St. There will be a limit of 2 cases of water per household while supplies last.