About 250 residents in hillside homes above Ventura High School were advised to boil drinking water until at least 12:30 p.m. today after a failure in the municipal water supply monitoring system was detected Friday.
Residents may call a recorded line at City Hall today to learn whether their water supply has been cleared for drinking, said Steve Wilson, Ventura water superintendent.
The advisory affects about 85 homes between Lincoln Drive to the west, Catalina Street to the east, Hillcrest Drive to the north and Poli Street to the south. The notice was issued about 3:40 p.m. Friday after the reservoir tank that serves the area went dry.
"Normally, as the tank level dropped an alarm would go off," Wilson said. "But because the transmission sent to us said there was still 12 feet of water in that tank, we didn't get an alarm until people called to say they were out of water."
Wilson said none of the homes actually went dry, but they had lost water pressure. The problem was corrected within an hour.
The city is required to advise residents to boil water any time a reservoir tank drops below a certain level. The danger, he said, is that the loss of pressure might allow a hose or other outlet to draw water back into the system.
A hose left in a bucket with cleaning materials, for instance, could draw those contaminants back into the line.
But Wilson said the system failure was caught so quickly that there was little chance of contamination.
For a recorded message after 12:30 p.m. on the condition of the water supply, call 652-4504. In case of additional questions or problems, call customer service at 647-5127.