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Residents in Laval's west end urged not to use tap water

Some residents in Laval are being urged not to consume the tap water until further notice because "it poses a health risk."

Officials say they should only use the water to flush toilets, and shouldn't even use it for bathing.

Officials issued the advisory as a preventative measure as they say the water in the area could have been contaminated during a fire earlier Tuesday morning that forced four families out of their homes.

The fire started around 5 a.m. on Lynne Street at the back of a home and then spread to three others. It took around 40 firefighters to extinguish.

The city announced Tuesday afternoon that the tap water contains contaminants that can't be removed by boiling and that exposure to it could cause skin, eye, or nose irritation. The advisory affects people in about 2500 homes in the city's Sainte-Dorothée district.

On Wednesday, some residents said they are concerned because by the time they heard about the advisory they'd already consumed the water.

Vivian Ly said she hopes news of the advisory has spread by now. "I found that my neighbour didn’t know. I am worried that people don’t know," Ly said.

Others are wondering how much time the cleanup it will take. Resident , Maiite Hernandez said her grandson requires a lot of water.

"Usually, I think they give two bottle per family but we have five adult and one baby so it’s not enough," she said.

Crews are working to flush out contaminants from the water pipes but it’s not known how long the advisory will remain in effect.

Clean drinking water is being made available to residents at the Jolibourg Community Centre from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. Tuesday and from 8 a.m. on Wednesday.

Showers are also being opened at the Martin St-Louis and Hartland-Monahan Arenas until 11 p.m. Tuesday and from 6 a.m. on Wednesday.

Four residences were damaged, and four families relocated after a fire broke out in Laval on Sept. 26, 2023. (Kelly Greig/CTV News)

A notice on the City of Laval website said people who have eye irritation should rinse their eyes for 15 to 20 minutes with lukewarm water in an area that is not contaminated. If symptoms persist after 45 minutes, residents are asked to call the poison control centre at 1-800-463-5060.

"Do not induce vomiting" for gastrointestinal symptoms, the city recommends. People can rehydrate with milk or clean water and then call the poison control centre.

-With files from CTV's Rob Lurie Top Stories

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