What to Know
- The 24-inch water main line was repaired late Tuesday night. The water system is being recharged
- The line broke at about 8 a.m. Monday, leaving Mineral Wells residents without water
- Residents ordered to boil water before consumption until Friday morning, the earliest
A main 24-inch water line that broke in Mineral Wells Monday, cutting off water in the entire town, has been repaired amid an official boil water notice, officials said Wednesday.
Restaurants and laundromats were forced to close after the Palo Pinto County town's 17,000 residents were given the Boil Water Notice Tuesday morning.
City officials said crews completed repairs Tuesday night and began to recharge the water system. Officials said Wednesday morning that residents, for the next 48 hours, must boil water before consumption.
UPDATE: Mineral Wells has issued a notice telling residents they should boil tap water prior to consuming it. pic.twitter.com/vJMDIFD1ns— Tim Ciesco (@TimCiescoNBC5) December 27, 2016
The city planned to pass out bottled water at the Center of Life starting at 6 p.m., at 200 S.W. 5th Street, Police Chief Dean Sullivan said.
The problem started at about 8 a.m. Monday when the line burst near the corner of Southeast 8th and 4th streets. The location of the line, in a canal beneath a bridge, has made it difficult for crews to repair, said city manager Lance Howerton.
"It couldn't have happened in a worse place," Howerton said.
"I feel like I'm in a jungle somewhere," said resident Harry Small, talking about the difficulty of a day without water. "You don't even think about it, brushing your teeth, the simple things."
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For John Upham, owner of Old School Pizza, the water problem has meant his restaurant – in a time they were expecting plenty of business – has had to shut down.
Upham stayed open on Monday, until the water turned to a trickle. Tuesday morning, the faucets ran completely dry. It led to an extended Christmas vacation for some and the loss of a much-needed paycheck for others.
"It's challenging," Upham said. "But once we open back up, life will just keep going like normal."
After the water main is fixed, the city will remain under a boil water notice for at least 48 hours while water is sent to Fort Worth for testing.
Mineral Wells is located about 17 miles west of Weatherford on U.S. 180.
Well water from the town became famous in the late 1800s and into the early 20th century for its medicinal qualities. Texas historical records show Mineral Wells had 400 mineral wells by 1920.