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Water woes hit campus

Following the concerns for safe water consumption after a technical failure at Valdosta’s water treatment facility, fears have now been alleviated as the city’s water has been proven safe for public use. 

 On Jan. 25 at 7:30 p.m., the Georgia Environmental Protection Division issued a lift of the advisory for all Valdosta residents to boil their water before consumption. The results of a test sample taken from the city’s water supply on Monday showed that no harmful bacteria were present.

 After several days without immediate access to clean water, businesses were once again able to offer their full services starting Tuesday, with the exceptions of a couple venues.
 The fountain drink dispensers, and Starbucks on campus were unable to provide their services immediately after the lift of the advisory, due to the fact that their equipment require professional restaurant cleaning services before reuse.

 These services were able to re-open Wednesday evening.

 Despite immediate fears from students that water would be unavailable after the power failure at the treatment plant, campus staff was quick to respond. Efforts to keep the campus residents supplied with fresh water were immediate and effective.

 According to Dean of Students, Russell Mast, after contacting Nestle Water Company, a representative of the company, Spence Richardson agreed to donate a total of 15,000 bottles of water to aid in the campus’ needs.

 “The housing staff and RAs helped unload all the water by hand and divided it up among all the residence halls,” Mast said. “By 1:30 p.m., each of the residence halls had a minimum of five bottles per student resident.”

 Adel Ice was also able to donate a total of 4,000 bags of ice to the dining hall services.

 General Manager of Dining Services, Rich Yokeley said he was very proud of the response of his employees to the lack of water, some of them working all weekend long to ensure the university was taken care of.

 The water advisory was set in place after a sequence of technical malfunctions at the City of Valdosta water treatment plant, starting around midnight Jan. 22.

 Students, both off and on campus, woke up Saturday morning along with the residents of Valdosta to dry water faucets.

 Many students were forced to purchase their own water from stores in town in order to go about their daily rituals before the return of water services around 1 p.m.

 Several stores around town were unable to keep up with the demand of clean water, many running out of bottled water around mid-afternoon. 

 Some businesses around the city were forced to shut down Saturday, including the dining services on campus.

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