The City of Houston lifted its boil water notice Sunday afternoon as the region continues to warm up and recover from a frigid winter storm that caused widespread power outages and left residents with little or no water pressure earlier this week.
The city said in a news release that water from the its main system, which serves areas such as the Heights, Garden Oaks, Oak Forest and other North and Northwest Houston neighborhoods, is now safe to use for drinking, cooking and making ice. Residents had been required to boil any water used for consumption since Wednesday, because the pressure in the city's water system had dipped below 20 pounds per square inch.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has since received samples of Houston's tap water and determined that it meets regulatory standards and is safe to drink, according to the city.
"The historic freezing temperatures in Houston last week caused water pressure to drop throughout the city. I appreciate everyone's patience as Houston Water crews worked nonstop to restore the pressure and gain the TCEQ's approval to lift the boil water notice," Mayor Sylvester Turner said in a statement. "In the meantime, my office and partners distributed almost 3 million bottles of water citywide. Our community helped each other through tough times and once again showed why we are #HoustonStrong."
Now that the boil water notice has been lifted, the city said residents should flush their water systems by running cold-water faucets for at least one minute, clean automatic ice makers by making and discarding several batches of ice, and run water softeners through a regeneration cycle.
Residents with questions about how to flush their water systems can call 311 or 713-837-0311.
City water quality reports are available at https://www.publicworks.houstontx.gov/water-quality-report.