UPDATE (Oct. 16, 2019) —
The Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County says the customers impacted by this advisory can now use their water as normal. Water samples collected over two consecutive days from McKeesport, and the boroughs of White Oak, Versailles and Port Vue were all clear.
MCKEESPORT, Pa. (KDKA) – One hundred seniors who count on Meals on Wheels every day in McKeesport won’t be receiving any cooked food today.
The kitchen at First United Methodist Church of McKeesport is closed because of the boil water advisory in place for multiple communities including McKeesport, Port Vue, Borough of Versailles and White Oak.
“We deal with a lot of elderly people and their weakened immune systems, so we have to be extra careful,” said Rose Marshall of Meals on Wheels.
The boil water advisory is required by the Westmoreland Municipal Authority after an intake pump at a McKeesport water plant.
Water has to pass two consecutive clear tests before the advisory can be lifted.
According to the authority, inadequately treated water may contain disease-causing organisms including viruses and parasites. As a result, restaurants are resorting to bottle water.
Since the boil water advisory started, customers have been taking advantage of water buffaloes at various locations in McKeesport, Port Vue and White Oak.
Cases of free bottled water are also going fast. The Meals on Wheels program plans to pass out more bottle water tomorrow.
Today, the organization’s kitchen was closed as a safety precaution, protecting approximately 100 seniors.
“Even if we could not cook, we will take something, a bagged lunch or something, to take to them,” said Marshall.
“A lot of them are shut-ins, can’t get out or make meals for themselves, so it’s very important,” said Thad Merrimam from Meals on Wheels.
Meanwhile, Veltre’s Pizza in White Oak was open for business.
They had to boil water for everything from washing dishes to making pizza sauce.
“We don’t want to contaminate anybody. We don’t want anybody to get sick,” said Paula Miklo from Veltre’s Pizza.
“So that’s what we’re doing. We’re just boiling water and I haven’t been able to help with any of the cooking today because I’ve been boiling water.”