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Burlington lifts boil water advisory, restaurants prepare to reopen

The Alamance County Health Department gave businesses several steps to take before beginning service. Many plan to open Saturday.

BURLINGTON, N.C. — Restaurants and other businesses faced a long night as Burlington lifted a boil water advisory Friday.

The problem forced more than 800 businesses in the area to close for a day and a half as the city investigated possible E.Coli contamination. 

The City of Burlington flushed out the water system for the apartment complex in question and then tested it again for the bacteria. The test took just over 24 hours to complete. The city said the tests came back clean. As of Friday evening, no E. Coli is present in the city's water distribution system. 

After the advisory lifted, some businesses said it would still take until Saturday to reopen. The Alamance County Health Department gave them several steps to complete before resuming business.

Crazy Mexico Mexican Restaurant began the process of flushing sinks and dumping ice Friday evening at all three locations. The restaurant's owner originally thought it would take until Sunday to reopen but they are now hoping to bring customers back at regular hours Saturday.

"Saturdays, Fridays are our busiest days every during the week, especially with specials and everything but its a big relief for us, the workers, everyone," Anijey Flores-Jasso said. 

Flores-Jasso is the owner's daughter and manages the Haw River location. She said the process of cleaning will take about three hours but said it's worth it.

Health officials and the City of Burlington took a lot of steps to get to this point. That contamination was found only in an outdoor spigot. 

Testing showed no issues up or down the pipes from that location but the city needed another clean test from the contaminated area to lift the advisory.

"(They) replaced the pipe, completely flushed that residence as well as the systems around that to a pretty large targeted area and then we were able to take samples again," Morgan Lassater said.

Lassater is the Community Engagement Manager for the City of Burlington.

It took a full 24 hours for those samples to come back but they showed no E Coli present in the city's water system, meaning the water is safe to drink and use.

Crazy Mexico asks for patience as they work to reopen. Flores-Jasso wants customers to know they will make sure everything is clean and safe for their next meal.

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