Portland Water Bureau lifts boil water notice; tap water safe

PORTLAND, Ore. - The Portland Water Bureau has lifted the boil water notice for the entire city of Portland.

The bureau said on its website Saturday morning that tap water is safe to drink.

Follow-up tests showed no bacterial contamination. The bureau recommends flushing all taps for 2 minutes or until the water runs cold before drinking tap water for the first time. Doing so will flush any water that might be contaminated.

State health officials detected E. coli bacteria in water samples at three locations over a three-day period earlier this week, prompting a boil water notice that lasted for about 24 hours.

Officials said 670,000 people were affected by the boil water notice; the largest in the city's history.

It's unclear what caused the contamination. An investigation into determining the source is ongoing, the bureau said.

As a precaution, the Portland Water Bureau says it will be draining and cleaning Reservoirs 1 and 5. The reservoirs will be put back into service once they are determined to be safe.

The boil order forced the some coffee shops and restaurants to shut down. Portlanders rushed to grocery stores to buy bottled water.

Water is safe to drink for all Portland Water Bureau customers, as well as customers of the following water providers:

  • Burlington Water District

  • City of Gresham (North of I-84)

  • Lake Grove Water District

  • Lorna Portland Water

  • Palatine Hill Water District

  • Rockwood Water District

  • Tigard Water Service Area (including Durham, King City and Bull Mountain)

  • Valley View Water District

  • West Slope Water District