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Do Not Consume Notice lifted for Inishbofin Public Water Supply Scheme

03 November 2023

Information below is relevant until further updates are provided here or on our Supply and Service Updates section.

A Do Not Consume Notice for Inishbofin Public Water Supply Scheme has been lifted with immediate effect. Uisce Éireann can confirm that, following consultation with the Health Service Executive, customers can now resume normal use of the water supply. 

The notice, which was issued on 14 September, was put in place to protect the health of customers due to elevated levels of manganese detected in the public water supply. 

Drinking water experts from Uisce Éireann worked to lift the notice as quickly and safely as possible and following satisfactory water samples the Do Not Consume notice has been lifted. The 156 customers affected can now use their water as normal. 

Uisce Eireann’s Justin Doran acknowledged the impact of the notice on homes and businesses on the Island and thanked the community for their support while we worked to lift the notice. 

Uisce Éireann’s primary focus remains the protection of public health and we worked with our stakeholders to lift the notice as quickly as possible."

We are grateful to customers, elected representatives, community groups and the media for their assistance in sharing information on the Do Not Consume Notice.

Updates are available on the Water Supply Updates section, on X (formerly Twitter) @IWCare and via our customer care helpline, open 24/7 on 1800 278 278.

Business customers can sign up to Uisce Éireann’s text alert service to receive updates on supply interruptions over four hours in duration at www.water.ie/business-updates. To register as a vulnerable customer or as an alternative contact, visit www.water.ie/vulnerablecustomer.  

Uisce Éireann is responsible for delivering public drinking water and wastewater services for the people of Ireland. We are committed to enabling communities to thrive by continuously upgrading and developing critical infrastructure to support sustainable growth and development, providing safe drinking water, and enhancing the environment. 

Previous Updates

Notice due to elevated levels of manganese

Following consultation with the Health Service Executive (HSE), Uisce Éireann, working in partnership with Galway County Council, has issued a Do Not Consume Notice for all consumers on the Inishbofin Public Water Supply Scheme due to elevated levels of manganese. The notice applies to approximately 156 customers supplied by the Inishbofin Public Water Supply Scheme.

It is especially important that mains drinking water is not given to bottle fed infants.

Please note this is not a Boil Water Notice. Boiling the water will not reduce manganese levels and is therefore not a suitable measure to make the water safe to consume. 

Alternative water supplies in the form of bulk tankers are currently being arranged and will be located at the Old Pier. The alternative water supplies will be replenished on a daily basis. Customers are reminded to use their own containers when taking water from the tanker and to boil water before consumption as a precautionary measure.

Uisce Éireann drinking water compliance and operational experts are working with colleagues in Galway County Council to resolve this situation as soon as possible.

Speaking about the imposition of the notice, Eoin Hughes, Uisce Éireann said “Uisce Éireann is aware of the impact a Do Not Consume Notice is having on the local community and would like to reassure impacted customers that we are working hard to lift the notice as quickly and as safely as possible. We would ask customers who have concerns to contact our customer care team on 1800 278 278.”

This water should not be used for:

  • Drinking
  • Drinks made with water
  • Food preparation, washing or cooking of food,
  • Brushing of teeth
  • Making of ice
  • Children under 12 months old should not drink this water
  • In particular, children under 12 months old should not drink this water. This water should not be used for making up infant formula for bottled fed infants. An alternative source of water should be used. Bottled water can also be used to make up infant formula. All bottled water, with the exception of natural mineral water, is regulated to the same standard as drinking water. It is best not to use bottled water labelled as ‘Natural Mineral Water’ as it can have high levels of sodium (salt) and other minerals, although it rarely does. ‘Natural Mineral Water’ can be used if no other water is available, for as short a time as possible, as it is important to keep babies hydrated.
  • If bottled water is used to make up infant formula it should be boiled once (rolling boil for 1 minute), and cooled in the normal way
  • Ready-to-use formula that does not need added water can also be used.
  • Domestic water filters will not render water safe to drink
  • Caution should be taken when bathing infants to ensure that they do not swallow the bathing water
  • Discard ice cubes in fridges and freezers and filtered water in fridges

What can you use water for?

  • The water can be used for personal hygiene, bathing, flushing toilets, laundry and washing of utensils.
  • Uisce Éireann and Galway County Council will continue to liaise with the Health Service Executive with a view to lifting this drinking water restriction as soon as practicable.

Updates will be available on our Supply and Service Updates section, on X (Twitter) @IWCare and via our customer care helpline, open 24/7 on 1800 278 278.