Stafford lifted its boil water advisory for the southern part of the county on Friday afternoon after tests showed no evidence of contamination.
The advisory went into effect Tuesday for thousands of southern Stafford residents after an old water main broke on Enon Road near Stafford High School. Main breaks can lead to contamination by reducing water pressure.
Stafford officials said they tested the water in accordance with Virginia Department of Health guidelines out of an abundance of caution. "Authorities greatly appreciate the public’s patience through this process of testing to ensure the public’s safety," county officials said in a statement.
Residents who have additional questions can call the Utilities Department at 658-8616.
The affected area stretched from White Oak and Falmouth to just south of Stafford Courthouse and included Ferry Farm Elementary, Grafton Village Elementary, Dixon Smith Middle, Conway Elementary, Falmouth Elementary, Drew Middle, Stafford High and the Gari Melchers Complex. Those schools provided bottled water to students and prepared lunches using boiled or no water.
The Rappahannock Regional Jail off U.S. 1 was also impacted by the advisory. Several relatives of inmates contacted The Free Lance–Star to say that the jail is not providing enough water. Jail Superintendent Phil Grimes disputed that account, saying authorities spent $3,160 on bottled water for inmates as soon as they learned about the advisory.
"They're not going to be deprived of drinking water,” he said.