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The City of Artesia has received the unpleasant news that the boil water order in effect since Saturday will continue at least through Thursday afternoon.

No test results had been positive for E. coli since those received Thursday and Saturday, which put the boil water alert in effect. However, results received Sunday were positive for total coliforms — a naturally-occurring bacteria found in soil — which delayed the order’s lifting.

Test results received Monday were clear of all contaminants, meaning a second clear result today would have lifted the order. However, today’s results showed positive for both E. coli and total coliforms in one of eight tests.

The Artesia Public Schools have said classes will still resume tomorrow as scheduled, with the precautions listed in the following article in place: http://www.artesianews.com/1499651/artesia-public-schools-to-resume-classes-wednesday.html

Following is the press release issued just now by the City of Artesia:

The City of Artesia, in compliance with the directives of the Drinking Water Bureau of New Mexico, has extended the Boil Water Alert through at least Thursday, September 21. One of eight test results received today, on samples taken Monday, was positive for both e-coli and Total Coliform. Consequently, at least two more days of testing is required by the State of New Mexico.

As stated above, the Boil Water Alert remains in effect. The alert advises that water to be consumed, used for cooking or washing fruits and vegetables must be boiled for a minimum of one minute before being used. City water continues to be safe for bathing, showering, washing clothes and watering lawns and plants. Ice made from the City water system should not be used. This includes residential ice makers as well as commercial and restaurant ice.

City personnel will continue to be available to monitor senior citizen residents, nursing home facilities, the meal site and daycare centers. Residents with hardships and/or unable to secure a source of water should call 575-746- 5057 or 575-746- 9821. Additional information about a Boil Water Alert can be found by going on line to www.env.nm.gov/dwb/Documents/boil .