OLYMPIA, Wash. — The Department of Health (DOH) is reassuring residents that drinking water throughout Washington remains clean and safe despite a chlorine supply shortage that's impacting regional drinking water and wastewater treatment utilities.
"We assure you there is no immediate impact to drinking water in Washington," said Lauren Jenks, assistant secretary of Environment Public Health in a statement Friday. "We will continue to monitor and communicate updates as they happen."
The chlorine shortage is the result of an electrical failure at Westlake Chemical, based in Longview, Wash., according to the DOH. Westlake Chemical supplies chlorine to water and sewer utilities in Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Northern California.
The situation is expected to be resolved within "a couple of weeks," according to the DOH. The DOH also said the state's largest water utilities should have enough supply to last until chlorine supplies resume.
Seattle Public Utilities, Tacoma Public Utilities, the city of Everett and partner agencies reassured customers Friday that their drinking water remains safe to use and they continue to have enough supply.
However, some smaller jurisdictions have advised customers to conserve water.
The city of Anacortes announced Thursday it's asking customers of its regional water utility to start conserving water due to the chlorine shortage, according to a press release. Customers include residents of Anacortes, Oak Harbor, La Conner, the Naval Station at Whidbey Island and the Marathon and Shell oil refineries.
The DOH on Friday recommended customers check with their local water utility website for specific information regarding the shortage.