SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (WPRI) — A boil water advisory is affecting tens of thousands of Rhode Islanders in South County, including the South Kingstown Animal Shelter.
On Saturday, cases upon cases of bottled water lined the halls. Most of it was donated by people concerned about the animals.
“They usually have a weakened immune system so the first thing we’re worried about is those weakened immune systems, are they gonna be the first ones to get sick,” shelter employee Amanda Nelson said.
The shelter tells us it’s now giving bottled water to the animals to drink and using it to wash dishes.
The shelter doesn’t have a stove to boil tap water and even if they did, we’re told it would be too time consuming because of the demand.
On Friday night, the shelter posted on Facebook pleading for donations of bottled water.
The next day, their call was answered.
“Each dog that we’ve owned has been adopted from a shelter so when I saw the call for water I was going grocery shopping anyhow this morning, I picked up a case,” Arlene Hicks of South Kingstown said.
According to the shelter, about fifty different people brought in water.
“I was actually very touched by how much people have come forward,” Nelson said.
As Eyewitness News reported, almost forty-thousand customers are affected by the boil water advisory, which comes in response to the discovery of E.coli bacteria in the water.
The Department of Health says any water used for things such as drinking, cooking, brushing teeth or washing dishes should be boiled for at least a minute before using.