The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has issued a boil water advisory for the city of Sterling public water supply system, located in Rice County.


This advisory is not related to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Customers should observe the following precautions until further notice:


• If your tap water appears dirty, flush the water lines by letting the water run until it clears.


• Boil water for one minute prior to drinking or food preparation or use bottled water.


• Dispose of ice cubes and do not use ice from a household automatic icemaker.


• Disinfect dishes and other food contact surfaces by immersion for at least one minute in clean tap water that contains one teaspoon of unscented household bleach per gallon of water.


• Water used for bathing does not generally need to be boiled. Supervision of children is necessary while bathing so that water is not ingested.


• People with cuts or severe rashes may wish to consult their physicians.


The advisory took effect on July 12 and will remain in effect until the conditions that placed the system at risk of bacterial contamination are resolved. KDHE officials issued the advisory because of a loss of pressure due to an electrical malfunction. Failure to maintain adequate pressure may result in a loss of chlorine residuals and bacterial contamination.


Regardless of whether the public water supplier or KDHE announced a boil water advisory, only KDHE can issue the rescind order following testing at a certified laboratory.


For consumer questions, contact the water system or KDHE at 785-296-5514. For consumer information, visit KDHE’s PWS Consumer Information webpage at www.kdheks.gov/pws/emergencyresponse/water_disruption.htm.