Boil Water Notice in Austin


photo by Hannah McDonough

Hannah McDonough, Editor

Have you noticed all of the “Out of Service” signs on the water fountains? How about the water they hand out in the Student Center? This is due to a boil water notice. A boil water notice is when our water is contaminated and we have to find another way to get clean drinking water.  It isn’t just something that is happening at CVMS. This is a city-wide issue.

Causes Of Boil Water Notice

As you’ve probably noticed, Austin has been getting a lot of rain. This is because of hurricane season. It started around Sept. 10 and is predicted to officially end on Nov. 30. Recently, we have been getting the remnants (all this rain)  from Hurricane Willa. But you’ve heard of the others like Hurricane Michael or Florence. So the hurricanes cause the rain that causes flooding. Flooding (inconveniently) has been happening here in Central Texas. But this isn’t your typical flooding. This flooding made history. Mansfield dam had to open four floodgates. And that leads to our boil water notice. The flood picks up dirt and germs and bacteria along the way. This can then get into our drinking water, causing the notice we are under. Basically, hurricanes lead to rain that leads to flooding that leads to contaminated water.

What Do You Do In A Boil Water Notice? 

Of course, we need water to survive, so how do we get clean water? Well, as the name says, we can boil our water. This will get rid of bacteria and microorganisms in our water. You should bring it to a rolling boil for at least three minutes. You can also drink out of plastic, store-bought water bottles. These do not contain contaminated water, so they are safe to drink. You should also make sure your pets have safe water to drink. They can get many of the same diseases we can get. Even down to washing your fruit and brushing your teeth, you should boil water. Your fruit and toothbrush will end up in your mouth. Even a small bit of water can get you sick. So always make sure your water is from a plastic bottle or it’s boiled.

How Are We Affected? 

“We got a lot of plastic water bottles. It’s kind of obnoxious.”

Sonali Srikanth (6)

“I have to bring water bottles to school and when I’m finished, I can’t fill them up. It’s difficult. We can’t do as much laundry or our clothes will smell.”

-Bella Toney (7)

“But it doesn’t just affect us, students. The school district is affected because they have to provide water bottles for the schools and their students. Although students are recommended to bring there own drinks, districts must still provide water for anyone who needs it.”


On Thursday, Oct. 25 there were 12 pallets of water delivered to Canyon Vista. Each pallet weighs 1 ton, contains 79 cases of water, and each case holds either 35 or 24 bottles of water. The estimation is that students and teachers have 27,000 bottles of water and 24,000 pounds of water on Friday.

In the end, it’s not fun to deal with a boil water notice. But just remember to drink from/ bring plastic water bottles and boil your water and you will be safe.