TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KLIX) – A recent waterline break affected homeowners and businesses in north Twin Falls, but according to a city water professional the incident should serve as a reminder to all residents of the need to have backflow prevention devices on their own irrigation lines.

“We pulled samples and everything came back clean,” Robert Bohling, the city’s water superintendent, said of the waterline break that happened March 11 on North College Road. “But until the samples come back [after a line break] we don’t really know what may have gotten into the system.”

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In response to the recent line break the city issued a cautionary water advisory, encouraging residents to boil their drinking water or drink bottled water.

It doesn’t have to be a main waterline break that can cause problems for you, however. Contaminants could also wind up in your own irrigation system if a problem developed with your own line. If you turn on a faucet and it is sucking air, for instance, you know there’s a problem.

To help lessen the worry the city suggests residents make sure they have backflow prevention devices on their sprinkling systems and hoses.

Having backflow prevention devices on personal lines became mandatory years ago, Bohling said, and newer homes are often equipped with the devices; but there are a number of people who still don’t have them.

“Nobody really thinks about them until something like this happens,” he said, noting they’re inexpensive and fairly easy to put onto your systems. If you don't have one and the city finds out about it, you could be fined.

Need another reminder? Bohling says the city often sends out information about the need of backflow prevention devices with residents’ water bills.

“We want good, clean drinking water and we want to know that we’re providing it,” he said. “These devices are for own safety and the safety of our kids.”