S&WB asks residents to immediately turn off the tap

NEW ORLEANS – The Sewerage and Water Board is asking New Orleans residents to immediately turn off all running water.

Demand on the system spiked as the temperatures dropped below freezing this week, causing water pressure to drop from the 68 to 72 pounds per square inch range to around 62 psi this morning, according to the S&WB.

That level, while still lower than usual, is far above the 15 psi level that automatically triggers a boil water advisory.

While running water during freezes can prevent pipes from bursting, you only need a stream of water about as thick as pencil lead to be effective.

Temperatures are above freezing today and aren’t expected to drop again until tonight, removing the need for a constant running flow.

Residents in parts of Tangipahoa and Lafourche Parishes are currently facing boil water advisories after the freezing temperatures reduced water pressure to unsafe levels.

Turning off running water now will allow the pressure to build back up within the system and prevent any potential problems, including interference with the New Orleans Fire Department’s ability to draw the water necessary to fight fires, according to the S&WB.