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Residents of Jackson, Mississippi, Warned “Do Not Drink the Water” as Floodwaters Rise

HeadlineAug 30, 2022

Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves has declared a state of emergency in the capital Jackson and will mobilize the National Guard, after torrential rains caused the Pearl River to overtop its banks, flooding a water treatment plant. Governor Reeves said Monday evening that emergency workers were scrambling to deliver potable water to 180,000 people around Jackson who lack enough water to flush toilets or fight fires.

Gov. Tate Reeves: “Please, stay safe. Do not drink the water. In too many cases, it is raw water from the reservoir being pushed through the pipes. Be smart.”

It’s the latest crisis to impact aging infrastructure in Jackson, where officials estimate the cost of fixing the city’s water system could top $2 billion. In early 2021, Jackson residents spent more than a month under “boil water” orders after winter storms caused pipes and water mains to burst. Eighty-two percent of Jackson’s residents are Black.

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