County of Erie


County Executive

GALE R. BURSTEIN, MD, MPH, FAAP                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH



HEALTH ALERT PRIORITY #341                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           July 21, 2016


Loss of pressure in northern parts of the Erie County Water Authority system




Bring tap water to a rolling boil, boil for one minute, and cool before using.  Or use bottled water certified for sale by the New York State Department of Health.  Boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking, making ice, washing dishes, brushing teeth, and preparing food until further notice.


The Erie County Water Authority has issued a Boil Water Notice that applies to the Town’s of Amherst, Clarence, Lancaster, Newstead and Villages of Williamsville, Lancaster and Depewand the area north of Broadway in the Town of Cheektowaga.  This area is being added due to calls today from customers reporting “low pressure” or “no water” last night (7/20/16) and of brown water today (7/21/16).



What Happened?

At about 8:30pm on Wednesday, July 20 2016 the water system experienced reduced pressure due to a break in a water main. When water mains lose pressure it increases the chance that untreated water and harmful microbes can enter your water.


Harmful microbes in drinking water can cause diarrhea, cramps, nausea, headaches, or other symptoms and may pose a special health risk for infants, some elderly, and people with severely compromised immune systems. But these symptoms are not just caused by microbes in drinking water. If you experience any of these symptoms and they persist, you should seek medical advice.


What is being done:

The water main break has been isolated so that no additional leakage can occur and water pressures have returned to normal.

Erie County Water Authority is currently testing water quality throughout the affected area. This will take several days and test results will be submitted to Erie County Department of Health. This process will determine when the boil water advisory can be lifted.

It is likely that you will need to boil water for the next 2-3 days until the safety of the water quality is confirmed. You will be informed when tests show that you no longer need to boil your water. 


For more information, please contact:

Customer Service of the Erie County Water Authority at 849-8444


Erie County Department of Health at 961-6800


One easy-to-use link with information regarding the boil water notice can be found at


Erie County Website:


A New York State Department of Health checklist for residents and homeowners under a Boil Water Notice is available at:


A New York State Department of Health checklist for hospitals and other resident medical facilities under a Boil Water Notice is available at:



Please share this information with other people who drink this water, especially anyone who may not get this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses). 

You can do this by posting this notice in a public place or distributing copies by hand or mail.


Health Category Definitions:

Health Alert FLASH: conveys the highest level of importance due to a large-scale, catastrophic public health emergency; warrants immediate action or attention

Health Alert Priority: conveys the highest level of importance; warrants immediate action or attention to a health problem or situation 

Health Advisory: provides important information for a specific incident or situation; may not require immediate action 

Health Update: provides updated information regarding an incident or situation; no immediate action necessary


The Erie County Department of Health does not provide medical advice. The information provided on the Erie County Department of

Health website is not an attempt to practice medicine and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis,

or treatment. It is for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your personal physician or other qualified health

provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or issue. Never disregard professional medical advice or

delay in seeking it because of the content found on the Erie County Department of Health website or this correspondence.


The ECDOH Health Alert & Advisory System is an e-mail notification system designed to alert community partners about important health related information. You can sign up to receive alerts & advisories at






Frequently Requested


Phone: (716) 858-7690

Fax: (716) 858-8701

Erie County Department of Health (ECDOH)
95 Franklin Street
Buffalo, New York 14202

ECDOH Locations

Western New York 211