Carlisle Barracks residents ordered to not use water

Carlisle/West Shore

CARLISLE, Pa. (WHTM) – Some 1,700 people in Carlisle are without water. It stems from a strange odor coming from the water supply at the Carlisle Barracks.

Cars lined up Monday afternoon in front of the commissary to get cases of water to drink. It’s because around midnight, firefighters detected gas in the water of one home.

“Our indicators at our level was just that something was there, but we couldn’t identify what type of gas it could be,” Garrison Commander Lt. Col. Courtney Short said.

That’s why the Army called the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection to investigate. The DEP told the 1,700 people using 300 connections to not use the water.

“Their guidance to us with no use will keep our families safe,” Short said. “They’re safe in their homes as long as they are not turning on their water, so we are not concerned.”

That includes not flushing toilets, washing hands, using the shower, doing laundry and even watering lawns.

“I live here too on the installation. My house was one of the ones that hit last night on the meter for the gas in the house, so I understand how they’re feeling as well,” Short said.

All non-essential personnel were sent home Monday. No one outside the installation is affected because the barracks operates its own public water system.

“The Army Heritage and Education Center is open for them to use flush toilets as well as the armory, the National Guard Armory. They have showers,” Short said.

For now, there are 36 portapotties on the installation and 400 cases of water being distributed.

“We’d ask that everybody be patient and hang in there and trust us and we will take care of them,” Short said.

The results from various water samples taken by DEP are expected no earlier than noon Tuesday.

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