City officials in Corpus Christi, Texas, issued a water ban on Dec. 14, 2016, that
lasted nearly four days, due to possible chemical contamination.
The water ban has since been lifted, after the 28 drinking water samples reviewed
by the Environmental Protection Agency tested negative for Indulin AA-86, which
was the chemical believed to have entered the water supply.
Indulin AA-86 is an asphalt emulsifying agent, deemed hazardous by the OSHA
Hazard Communication Standard. It can potentially cause respiratory issues, eye
and skin burns, allergic reactions, and target organ damage, according to
MeadWestvaco, the company that produces it.
Officials believed that an estimated three to 24 gallons of Indulin AA-86 might have
entered the water supply, as the result of a “backflow incident” at an industrial
complex, reported The Washington Post.
City spokeswoman Kim Womack advised residents not to use public tap water — for
any reason — and to use bottled water instead. Womack emphasized that residents
should not try to treat the water themselves, adding that “boiling, freezing, filtering,
adding chlorine or other disinfectants, or letting the water stand will not make the
Many restaurants and schools in the area closed as a result of the ban.
According to the San Antonio TV news station KSAT, this is the fourth water
advisory in Corpus Christi since 2015.