Residents around Robert’s Cove have been warned not to drink water from their taps until further notice, as an issue with treatment and distribution is being investigated.
Following consultation with the Health Service Executive (HSE), Irish Water and Cork County Council have issued a Do Not Consume Notice for all consumers on the Robert’s Cove Public Water Supply Scheme, due to issues with the treatment and distribution process which are under investigation.
It has been emphasised that it is especially important that mains drinking water in Robert’s Cove is not given to bottle-fed infants.
Water should not be used for drinking, drinks made with water, or for food preparation including the washing or cooking of food.
Residents are also warned not to use water for brushing teeth or making ice.
The public around Robert’s Cove have been warned that domestic water filters will not render water safe to drink, and that ice cubes and filtered water in freezers and fridges should be discarded.
In particular, children under 12 months old should not drink this water. Caution should be taken when bathing infants to ensure that they do not swallow the bathing water, and the water should not be used for making up infant formula for bottled-fed infants.
Irish Water have suggested that bottled water can be used to make up infant formula, as all bottled water, with the exception of natural mineral water, is regulated to the same standard as drinking water.
It is recommended not to use bottled water labelled as ‘Natural Mineral Water’ as it can have high levels of salt and other minerals, although it rarely does. ‘Natural Mineral Water’ can be used if no other water is available, for as short a time as possible, to keep babies hydrated.
If bottled water is used to make up infant formula, it should be boiled once (rolling boil for 1 minute), and cooled in the normal way.
Piped water can still be used for personal hygiene, bathing, flushing toilets, laundry and washing of utensils.
The notice applies to approximately 65 customers supplied by the Robert’s Cove Public Water Supply Scheme, and tankered water will be in place adjacent to the beach in Robert’s Cove to provide an alternative water supply to customers.
Customers are reminded to use their own containers when taking water from the tanker and to boil water before consumption as a precautionary measure.
Speaking about the imposition of the notice, Niall O’Riordan, Regional Operations Lead with Irish Water said “Irish Water is aware of the impact a Do Not Consume Notice is having on the community of Robert’s Cove and would like to reassure impacted customers that we are working hard to lift the notice as quickly and as safely as possible. We would ask customers who have concerns to contact our customer care team on 1800 278 278.”
Irish Water drinking water compliance and operational experts are working with Cork County Council to resolve the situation as soon as possible, and lift the drinking water restriction.
Updates will be available on Irish Water's website, under the Water Supply Updates section, on Twitter @IWCare and via the customer care helpline.