Orlando asks residents to be mindful of water usage during Hurricane Ian recovery

The City of Orlando said Tuesday that progress was being made to repair the city's sanitary systems that were damaged during Hurricane Ian. A request to limit water usage has been lifted, but residents are asked to be mindful of their water usage to not overwhelm treatment plants.

In a tweet of its own on Monday, the Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC) said the city had sustained "multiple damages" to sewer lift stations during the hurricane. Residents were asked to limit flushing toilets, laundry, washing dishes, taking showers or baths, and using irrigation systems. 

During a news conference on Monday, city officials said that drinking water is still safe and unaffected by the flooding or damage to the lift stations.  There were also no boil water notices for OUC customers.  

"The water system was not impacted at all; it's the wastewater system," said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. "Right now, we have at our three different wastewater treatment plants, we are operating at 150% of the rated capacity."

In the event a boil water notice may be implemented, residents should bring water to a rolling boil for at least one minute, then let the water cool before use. 

For residents who own a well that is covered with floodwater, state health officials are advising that you not use the well until you have a chance to test the water for bacteria or contaminants. 

"Please avoid drinking, cooking, washing dishes, and making ice with this water," said Dr. Robert D. Karch, M.D. with the Florida Department of Health in Orange County.