Environment Department Confirms Boil Water Advisory Required For Chama Water System


The New Mexico Environment Department’s (NMED) Drinking Water  Bureau (DWB) is confirming that a “boil water advisory” is required for the Chama Water System in Rio  Arriba County.  

Chama Water System was required to issue the advisory on May 10, 2023, after the water system notified  NMED that the water system’s turbidity levels were above the required standards. Turbidity is a measure  of the cloudiness of water, it is used to indicate water quality and filtration effectiveness. New Mexico  Drinking Water Regulations require Chama Water System to notify their water system consumers of this  finding as soon as practical but no later than 24 hours after the system is notified of the confirmation of  the violation.  

Chama Water System is a community public water system that serves approximately 1,573 users. This  advisory applies only to drinking water from the Chama Water System and does not extend to any other  surrounding water systems. 

Chama Water System users are advised to boil water for three minutes before: 

• Drinking 

• Making coffee, tea, and other drinks 

• Making ice 

• Cooking 

• Washing fruits and vegetables 

• Using the water to feed a baby 

• Brushing teeth 

• Providing as drinking water for pets 

No contamination in the water system has been confirmed, however, elevated levels of turbidity can  interfere with disinfection and provide a medium for microbial growth. Turbidity may indicate the  presence of disease-causing organisms. These organisms include bacteria, viruses, and parasites, which  can cause symptoms such as nausea, cramps, diarrhea, and associated headaches. 

The NMED Drinking Water Bureau will provide compliance oversight and offer technical assistance to  the water system and will require the Chama Water System to continue to test the water until no further  threat of contamination remains. 

More information about boil water advisories in English and Spanish is available here. For more  information on today’s announcement, please call the Drinking Water Bureau’s Compliance Supervisor, Wayne Jeffs at 505-469-7457.