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'It's our worst nightmare': Restaurants react to Englewood's boil advisory

25,000 people are impacted, as well as 211 businesses
Breakfast on Broadway
Posted at 4:10 PM, Aug 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-05 21:54:08-04

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — After closing down his restaurant Wednesday afternoon, Valdon Erpelding remembers the moment his wife received an alarming alert on her phone.

"And she said, 'This is a problem for us,'" said Valdon Erpelding, owner of Breakfast on Broadway.

The City of Englewood issued a boil water advisory for a portion of the city after an E. coli sample was found Wednesday. Approximately 25,000 people are impacted, as well as 211 businesses.

"It's our worst nightmare," Erpelding said.

The next morning, Erpelding put up a sign on his door, closing the restaurant for the day.

"We don't want to take any chances that there was E. coli in anything," Erpelding said.

While the restaurant was closed, there was plenty of work to be done.

"We started right in with burning the ice, because we know we can't use this, and sanitizing the ice machines and the ice bins. We went ahead and we threw out anything that we made with the water that was not boiled and so forth in the last day or two," Erpelding said.

The City of Englewood says they’re working under the guidance of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, and it could take up to 72 hours for the issue to be resolved. Until then, Erpelding is taking extra precautions to keep is staff and customers safe.

“Restaurants do take it very seriously,” Erpelding said.

They city says it will tell people when tests show the bacteria is clear and the boil order can be lifted. A water distribution site has also been set up at the Englewood Civic Center, located at 1000 Englewood Parkway. There's also a call center at 303-762-2365 to answer people’s questions.

An emergency alert was sent to people with cell phones in the area, and some residents were mistakenly included. In an update Thursday night, the Arapahoe County Office of Emergency Management said it's working with it's software provider to investigate why the mistake happened. ACOEM apologized for any inconvenience it caused to the people notified who shouldn't have been.