Update: 9-21-19 at 2:09 p.m.
In an update on their Facebook Malmstrom posted that the boil water advisory was cleared and all water tests for Peacekeeper housing have come back negative for any contamination.
Their update at 10:33 a.m.:
***WATER ADVISORY UPDATE ALL-CLEAR***
We are pleased to report all water tests for Peacekeeper housing have returned negative for any potential contamination. The boil advisory is no longer in effect. Since there were no contaminants, there are no health risks to the base populace. If you notice any cloudiness in the color of your water, flush the water line until clear and dispose of ice as necessary until the ice is clear. The cloudiness was caused by the accidental introduction of air into the water line. If you have any questions, please contact the Public Affairs office at 406-731-4050. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we took all necessary precautions following the accidental introduction of air during winterization maintenance.
Update: 9-20-19 at 2:18 p.m.
Malmstrom posted an update to their Facebook at 2:04 p.m. saying:
UPDATE ABOUT DRINKING WATER
20 September 2019
Malmstrom Air Force Base implemented a water boil advisory to Peacekeeper housing yesterday, September 19 at 4:30 p.m. We want to provide clarification for some concerns that have arisen as a result.
The advisory was a precautionary measure in response to a possible contamination during routine maintenance. There is no confirmation of bacteria; the water is being tested as part of protocol to ensure safety to all Malmstrom Air Force Base residents.
The area affected is strictly confined to the homes in the Peacekeeper housing. The CDC is within this zone and has been given bottled water for consumption. The houses within Peacekeeper housing are encouraged to continue to boil their water as a precaution as we await the confirmation from testing.
Out of an abundance of precaution, please boil water for human and/or pet consumption. Bring all water to a rolling boil for at least three minutes, and let it cool before using. Boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking, making ice, brushing teeth, washing dishes, and food preparation until further notice. All stored tap water, drinks or ice made since yesterday morning from this supply should be discarded.
Testing takes 24 to 48 hours and we will release the results as soon as they become available.
We do not expect that drinking tap water will cause any harm. However, if you develop symptoms such as diarrhea, cramps, nausea, headaches, or other concerning symptoms and if they persist for greater than 48-hours you may want to seek medical advice. We do not anticipate any additional risks for pregnant women or children.
Malmstrom Air Force Base is doing everything possible to resolve the issue. The health and safety of our Airmen and their families is a leadership priority. All measures being taken are to ensure everyone is being cared for.
If you have any questions, please contact the Public Affairs office at 406-731-4050.
MALMSTROM AFB: The boil water notice continues Friday morning after Malmstrom Air Force Base sent out the following press release Thursday evening.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT YOUR DRINKING WATER
You must flush then boil your water prior to consumption!
19 September 2019
A potential Bacteriological source was accidentally introduced into the Malmstrom AFB drinking water system on 19 September 2019 for Peacekeeper housing and housing near Peacekeeper. Air Force personnel are collecting water samples to look for the presence of bacteria, which could result in the formation of fecal coliform bacteria. Fecal Coliform bacteria, such as E. Coli, can be very harmful if consumed.
What should I do?
1) Before using water, turn it on and run it for at least one minute.
2) If you notice air bubbles or discoloration in the water, continue running until the water looks normal.
3) If you use the water for cooking, dishwashing or consumption by people or pets, boil it for at least 2 minutes and allow it to cool prior to use.
4) Continue to boil all water used in cooking, drinking, brushing teeth, or used to feed pets until further guidance is given.
“Boiling is the surest method to make water safe to drink and kill disease-causing microorganisms”
What is next?
Testing is currently being conducted. If bacteria is detected in the drinking water, Malmstrom AFB will run tests to isolate the location. We will flush individual pipes if the bacteriological growth can be isolated to a specific area. If it cannot be isolated, we will chlorinate the base water supply to eliminate the bacteriological growth.
For additional information, please contact Capt Newton Ooi or SSgt Aaron Wright from Bioenvironmental Engineering at 406-731-1580 (available Mon-Fri 0730 to 1630) or 406-781-9319 (On-Call phone), 341 OMRS/SGOJ, 7300 N. Perimeter Rd., Malmstrom AFB MT 59402. Please post this notice in a public place.
The current status of the water is unclear, but we are continuing to follow this and we will update this story as more becomes available.