Arlington, DC stores hustle to restock bottled water amid boil advisory

It’s not exactly the same as when people flock to grocery stores to stock up on milk, bread, and toilet paper as a snowstorm approaches — the emptying of bottled water from some Arlington, Virginia, and Northwest D.C. shelves on Friday and Saturday was due to the spur-of-the-moment inconvenience of a boil water advisory in much of those areas.

Saturday morning saw grocery stores restocking shelves with plastic gallon bottles and individual bottles of drinking water. Friday’s run came after a morning water main break prompted a boil water advisory, which will likely be in effect through Sunday afternoon.

For more information on what to do during the boil water advisory, go to Arlington County’s website

At a Harris Teeter on Glebe Road in Arlington, employees rolled large pallets of water that had been delivered overnight onto the store’s sales floor.

Front-of-store displays went from barren to fully-stocked, as employees removed plastic wrap covering the bottles.

For more information on what to do during the boil water advisory, go to DC Water’s website.

By Friday night, most of the bottled water on shelves had been sold, save for a few glass bottles of pricier Perrier sparkling water.

Since the 36-inch water main break near the Chain Bridge happened early Friday, and the boil water advisory was declared a few hours later, stores had enough time to increase scheduled deliveries of water for Saturday and Sunday.

While demand for bottled water will remain high during the advisory, local water officials were quick to remind residents that water boiled for three minutes, and allowed to cool, is then safe to drink.

Neal Augenstein

Neal Augenstein has been a general assignment reporter with WTOP since 1997. He says he looks forward to coming to work every day, even though that means waking up at 3:30 a.m.

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