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Boil water advisory economic impact survey available for businesses affected

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SAN DIEGO — A boil water advisory remained in effect for Coronado’s Silver Strand and portions of Imperial Beach and Chula Vista Saturday afternoon, the County of San Diego confirmed.

This comes after E. coli bacteria was detected Thursday in the drinking water system. Since then, residents in affected areas have been urged to either boil their water before using it or use bottled water.

A map of affected areas can be found here.

On Friday, county officials explained that California American Water Company, the utility agency in charge of these areas, is conducting an investigation to determine the cause of the contamination.  

“Once the source is identified and repaired, the water system will need to be flushed and then two rounds or cleaning samples are needed before we can actually lift the advisory,” San Diego County Board of Supervisors Chair, Nora Vargas said in a news conference Friday.

With the water system having 17,219 service connections, potentially impacting approximately 106,000 people, there are several businesses that are feeling the strain from having to keep their doors closed during this unforeseen predicament.

The lingering question for some business owners — can I receive economic assistance for losses experienced during the boil water advisory?

Though, there is no guarantee that state and/or federal assistance will become available for those impacted, the county is requesting that any businesses affected complete a voluntary Boil Water Advisory Economic Impact Survey.

The form is informational only, meaning completing the survey form does not guarantee that you will be eligible or will receive assistance, the county explained in a news release. Furthermore, it’s also not a substitution for submitting a claim with California-American Water Company or your insurance company.

However, county officials say the information collected will be used to determine if the county should attempt to seek state and/or federal assistance. The deadline for completing the survey is Sept. 15.

The county made the following statement regarding what business should do once the advisory has been lifted:

“County Environmental Health is working with restaurants to provide updated guidance and resources. Restaurants will receive guidance from the Department of Environmental Health and Quality on what to do when the boil water advisory is lifted. No food facility inspection or approval will be needed as part of the restaurant reopening process.”

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