Military officials said Wednesday they hope to restore clean drinking water to Elmendorf Air Force Base and Fort Richardson soon.
But as of Wednesday evening they were warning anyone who lives, works on or visits the two posts in Anchorage not to drink the water due to excess fluoride in the supply.
The water also should not be used to brush teeth and wash or cook food. Any ice cubes made since Tuesday should be thrown out, according to the Fort Richardson Water Treatment Plant. The fluoride cannot be boiled out of the water, according to Fort Richardson medical staff.
The fluoride problem was discovered at about 3:30 a.m. Wednesday at the plant but it is possible that it began as early as Tuesday afternoon, said Bob Zacharski, site manager for Doyon Utilities, a Native corporation subsidiary that runs the Fort Richardson plant, which supplies water to Fort Richardson and Elmendorf.
He and Fort Richardson officials said the fluoride levels in the utility's drinking water are tested daily at noon and were safe as of Tuesday's test.
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