Do-not-drink warning lifted for some in Sachs Harbour

After four weeks, the Northwest Territories’ chief environmental health officer has lifted a do-not-drink warning for some homes and buildings in Sachs Harbour.

The warning was first issued on March 23 after the smell of fuel and a “visible sheen” were found in the water supply for locations who had water delivered as of March 21. 

The community was cleared to deliver water using an alternative truck on March 25 and the main water truck was cleared to resume deliveries on March 29. But residents in affected houses and buildings were still advised not to drink their water until their tanks had been cleaned and refilled with clean water.


On Wednesday, the NWT health and social services authority said the community’s health centre, RCMP detachment, Ajgaliaq recreational complex, Sachs Harbour Community Corporation building, Housing NWT office, and one residential home – that of Ryan and Chelsea Lucas, the advisory stated – could immediately resume drinking their tap water.

The authority said testing of those locations did not detect any fuel.

The do-not-drink advisory remains in effect for all other affected locations and facilities. 

Anyone who smells fuel in their water is advised to wash their sink drains with soap and water and, if the odour persists, to contact the community government.