A boil-water order for water customers of the Indian Hills General Improvement District likely won't be lifted until Monday, district General Manager John Lufrano said.
"We're looking at possible word for a second sample on Sunday," Lufrano said. "Even if the lab called on Sunday and said the water was OK, we'd have to wait until Monday for the state to lift the order."
Residents are warned not to use their water for brewing coffee, washing food products, teeth brushing, or other uses in which residents might consume the water. The water is safe to use for cleaning, showering, hand washing with soap and flushing toilets.
Lufrano said Sunday is the earliest tests of the district's water could be completed. Each test takes around 24 hours and the state requires two clean tests before certifying the water system.
"If we have a problem, we'll keep taking samples and running them to Reno until the state is satisfied," he said.
The first test is scheduled to come back on Saturday. If that comes back positive for bacteria, the district would have to start the process over again.
Lufrano said a failure by the chlorine injectors resulted in half the chlorine going into the system.
Indian Hills receives its water from Minden through a pipeline operated by Douglas County.
Because water from Minden isn't chlorinated and Indian Hills has storage tanks, the district has to chlorinate the water.
Lufrano said that instead of the typical 12 gallons of chlorine a day, there was only five or six gallons.
"We don't have an explanation as to why the samples came back bad," he said. "The lab notified the state, which issued the boil water order."
Minden Town Manager Jenifer Scott said the town's water supply is safe. She said Minden utility workers are testing water as part of their standard procedure, and there has been no reason for concern. The pipeline also serves the East Valley.
"It appears the issue is isolated to Indian Hills," she said.
Lufrano said the improvement district turned to the media to alert residents to boil their water.
It has been a year since a malfunction caused pipes in higher portions of the district to run dry.
That incident occurred shortly before the pipeline from Minden was connected and required the district to use a variety of means to inform residents.