Saturday, May 1, 2010

Water main break leaves 37 MA communities without drinkable water

A friend from Springfield called me a few minutes ago to ask if I'd heard anything about a need to boil our water in Springfield because of something that had happened to the Quabbin Reservoir.  I told her I'd check around and it didn't take long to locate the news at a major break in a pipe carrying water from the Quabbin and the Wachusetts Reservoirs  to Metropolitan Boston has ruptured, dumping an astounding 8 million gallons of water an hour into the Charles River. The Massachusetts Water Resources Authority is turning to its emergency back-up reserves from the Chestnut Hill and Spot Pond Reservoirs and the Sudbury Aqueduct.

Life would be nothing without ironies, yes?  On Thursday, Concord, Massachusetts became the first city in the country to ban all sales of bottled water.  Concord  is not among one of the 37 communities who now needs to boil its water, or I imagine there would be plenty of "I told you so's" going on in the town right now.

My older daughter is moving today from her apartment in Salem to an apartment in Arlington, which is under the Boil Water order, and I gave her a call.  I can just imagine she and her friends, having just now finished moving furniture, going to the kitchen sink in the new place and getting a nice cold drink from the tap.

I've been waiting to calm down, if that ever happens,  before blogging about what is now being described as a "river of oil" rushing from the ocean floor in the Gulf of Mexico.  What ought to be clear, though is that we are using 19th and 20th century infrastructures to deal with 21st century life on earth,  and dangerous 21st century technologies to solve energy problems that demand a cutting edge vision.  When will we shift our priorities?

Photo of Quabbin Reservoir from thelehegarets' photostream at Flickr,

1 comment:

MoonRaven said...

I came home yesterday to news that we need to boil our water before drinking it. We are in one of the roughly thirty communities affected. (Sorry to hear that your daughter is, too.)

Between this and the Gulf of Mexico disaster, it seems like everything is breaking down at once.

Hopefully this will be a wake up call. As you say, it's time to shift our priorities.