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ECWA says boil water advisory was unnecessary

Water Authority says the DoH "didn't listen"
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Posted at 10:05 PM, Jul 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-25 22:05:56-04

The Chair of the Erie County Water Authority says last week's Boil Water Advisory, which impacted tens of thousands of residents, was unnecessary.

Earl Jann says the ECWA advised against issuing a Boil Water Advisory, but Erie County and its Department of Health did not "listen to our opinion on that."

"We don't think that there should have been one, but they have the authority to decree one and they did," Jann told reporters following a call-in town hall meeting Monday evening.

Gale Burstein, Erie County's Health Commissioner, says the DoH was following guidelines from the New York State sanitary code.

New York State's standard is a minimum water pressure of 20 psi (pounds per square inch).  

Burstein says they were able to document areas that dropped below 20 psi.  However, Jann says the levels never dropped that low.

"Because this effected such a large area, we decided to issue a Boil Water Advisory," Burstein said.

Burstein insists the Executive Director of the ECWA was "in the room" with Dolores Funke, Erie County's Director of Environmental Health, and that an agreement was reached to issue the Advisory.