Mouse Blamed for Boil Advisory

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A mouse that got into a reservoir in Wyoming County means people in Laceyville have to boil their water before drinking it.

Officials plan immediate repairs to the system.

It is also the latest in a string of water problems in that community.

In the last five or six years, Laceyville has had to deal with a number of boil advisories. There have been water shortages too.

The community is familiar with water problems, but this time it was a simple mouse that decided to take a dip in a reservoir that led to a boil advisory for 400 water customers.

At The Wiser Choice Restaurant in Laceyville a water boil advisory means not using the tap water. It means a pot of boiled water on the stove for cooking.

It is just one place in town inconvenienced.

"We just have to take extra caution, we have to boil the water.  We have to go through cases of water for drinking and to make our food," said Jill Vandemark of The Wiser Choice.

Signs went up on businesses downtown warning of the latest water boil advisory this time caused by a rodent in a community used to water woes.

"I believe this is the third one since I started here in November. So it's been a lot," Vandemark added.

Borough council members said this is the first boil advisory caused by a mouse. They showed Newswatch 16 the reservoir where the little guy died in the water creating quite a splash in this community.

In recent years there have been low water problems there and pumping issues, all because of what council members call an outdated system in the old buildings.

They would love to be free of water problems.

"I would. I would love it not to be, but we have to work with it and straighten it out if we can," said Laceyville Borough Council President Don Vandemark.

Borough council members have been trying seal any possible spot for a rodent to get in, but for a building that old, that's not an easy task.  They'd like to see a permanent fix.

"It's like trying to keep everything out of your house.  Even if you have a new house it's really difficult to keep it sealed," said council member Keith Pennay.

Borough leaders would like a new tank to store the water, but they don't have the money.

They are likely to get state grants to help improve the water system.

So would people who rely on the water to be mouse and problem free.

"I was disgusted. I'm totally disgusted with the water problems in this town, but they're trying to correct the situation.  I know it's a hard job to keep up with everything," said Ruth Heft of Laceyville.

The Laceyville Borough Council members said the water will have to pass some state DEP tests before the water boil can be lifted.

They said they have treated the water, but no one should use it for drinking or cooking without boiling it first until they get an all clear from the state.