Topeka, KS Boil Water Advisory!

A boil water advisory for the City of Topeka and surrounding areas

Matthew Self

1/20/20242 min read

TOPEKA (KSNT) – A boil water advisory for the City of Topeka and surrounding areas is now being extended for several additional days.

At 2:45 p.m. on Jan. 15, the City of Topeka announced on social media that the boil water advisory will last until Friday, Jan. 19. The advisory was initially announced on Sunday, Jan. 13 amid freezing temperatures across northeast Kansas.

The City of Topeka attributes the delay in lifting the advisory to a need for time to filter fresh water through the local systems so that sampling can take place. Once the city has finished this process, the advisory will be lifted.

No bottled water assistance is expected from the city at this time. Both humans and pets are asked to obey the boil water advisory while it is in effect.

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At 9:39 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 15, Taylor Bugg with the City of Topeka said utilities staff have completed repairs at the Water Treatment Plant and are working to distribute fresh water through the system.

“Due to the large water volume that was impacted, it will take some time to ensure that we have safe drinking water throughout our distribution system. We will allow adequate time before we begin sampling procedures to ensure accurate test results for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE). The boil advisory currently remains in effect and will be until KDHE verifies our water meets their standards. The city will alert customers once the advisory has been lifted by KDHE. The city will continue to update as we can and appreciates the community’s patience while we work to resolve this matter.”


The City of Topeka elaborated on what went wrong with the water supply system in their press release Monday afternoon, stating that a combination of low water in the Kansas River and extremely low temperatures caused the current boil water advisory to be issued. City staff located a broken PVC gas pip on a chlorine gas system that was likely broken due to the cold temperatures.

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The boil water advisory impacts customers living in Topeka and Shawnee County, according to a press release from the City of Topeka. A separate press release from the KDHE stated that the boil water advisory impacts people in Shawnee County Rural Water District 1C as well. Residents are encouraged to follow these steps while the advisory is in effect:

• If your tap water appears dirty, flush the water lines by letting the water run until it clears.

• Boil water for one minute prior to drinking or food preparation or use bottled water.

• Dispose of ice cubes and do not use ice from a household automatic icemaker.

• Disinfect dishes and other food contact surfaces by immersion for at least one minute in clean tap water that contains one teaspoon of unscented household bleach per gallon of water.

• Water used for bathing does not generally need to be boiled. Supervision of children is necessary while bathing so that water is not ingested. Persons with cuts or severe rashes may wish to consult their physicians.

The advisory was issued after it was found that chlorine residual levels at the water treatment plant failed to meet minimum standards required by regulations. A combination of low water levels and weather conditions have placed too much stress on the city’s water system, leading to a risk of bacterial contamination.