Everybody get your pots out! On Aug 31 at 11a.m. a boil water order was put in affect for Castleton’s Water District I, which includes the Castleton State College campus. This order has affected everyone on the campus as well as in the town surrounding the college.
Dean of Students, Dennis Proulx, stated that the water is contaminated with coliform bacteria. Once bacteria have been found in the water, tests are performed.
“The tests have to result negative for three consecutive days before the state certifies the water as clean enough to begin consuming again,” said Proulx.
The college is working hard to provide safe drinking water to the campus. A system of distribution has been put into place to have at least one or two containers per building.
“Volunteers have been going back and forth each day making sure these containers are kept full,” said Proulx.
The bright orange jugs are an eye sore when you walk into each building and your attention is immediately drawn to them. Piles of plastic cups line the tables the water jugs have been placed on.
“So far students have been great and patient. We’ve had lots of crisis this week that I believe the students will take it in stride as well,” Proulx said.
A tank of fresh water has been secured for the college campus. This will provide clean water throughout campus with priority to the dining areas. Huden Dining Hall has to boil water, let it cool and then use it for drinks. Fireside Café and the Coffee Cottage have strict guidelines to handling the contaminated water as well.
Students say they are having a very difficult time with the water order – both on and off campus. Showering in the residence halls has become a concern and students worry about brushing their teeth.
“Athletic trainers have been unable to produce more ice for injured athletes because of contaminated water, instead they have to buy bags of ice to use,” said sophomore Sarah Shirdon genuinely.
Athletes are impacted too. Freshman Molly Ramsden, who plays lacrosse, is especially not fond of the water notice.
“It’s kind of hard because I’m an athlete and need to stay hydrated,” Ramsden said.
Students off of campus are even less fortunate, having to purchase their own clean water to drink and use for everyday things like brushing their teeth.
The campus is hopeful that the boil water order will be lifted soon. Until then, patience is required by all.