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Residents are urged to boil their water

A glitch in a water treatment system in eastern Hillsborough County prompted officials to warn residents in Brandon and south and central Hillsborough to boil any water used for drinking or cooking until midnight Saturday.

The problem was a breakdown in the chlorination treatment system used to disinfect water at Hillsborough County's Lithia Water Plant, said Arnold Becken, section manager for water production at Hillsborough County's Water Department.

Despite the breakdown and subsequent warning, Becken said "there's really no reason to believe any bacteria is present in the water" because the system was back on line in less than an hour. In addition, water department crews flushed the system throughout the day Saturday, taking samples.

The breakdown, which occurred about 11:30 a.m., was repaired by 12:30 p.m. During that time, the plant pumped about 1-million gallons of water. However, Becken said, "the chance that anybody received the water is very minimal."

As a precaution, residents were told to let water come to a rolling boil for one minute.