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The Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission announced Tuesday morning that customers in portions of southern Prince George’s County including Joint Base Andrews, Temple Hills, Oxon Hill, Morningside, Hillcrest Heights and National Harborhad to stock up on water in preparation for an impending water outage. A section of 54-inch concrete pipeline in Forestville was failing, and mandatory water restrictions throughout parts of Prince George’s County were ordered to begin 9 p.m. Tuesday to allow for repairs. The water restrictions, estimated to impact approximately 200,000 residents, were intended to preserve the water supply for as long as possible and maintain the fire department’s ability to fight fires.

Joint Base Andrews shut down several facilities and operated only “mission essential” programs because of the water issue. The commissary and Malcolm Grow Medical Clinic and Surgery Center were closed, although the Emergent Care Center stayed open.

At press time, the pipe replacement has succeeded and WSSC staff are working to ensure that water going through that main pipe is safe to drink. Once the water is determined to be drinkable, the pipe will be put back in use and water restrictions will be lifted.

The pipe repair came at a time when the county is also dealing with extremely high summer temperatures, which would ordinarily attract residents to designated “cooling centers” in county-run parks, pools and community centers. Due to the water shut-off, some cooling centers were closed or operated on a reduced schedule during the early stages of repairs to the Forestville pipe, while others remained open with restricted water availability, such as relying on temporary restroom facilities during the shut-off. By Thursday morning most facilities had re-opened, with pools “topping off” using only water from delivery trucks. Before visiting a pool or community center, call to verify that it is operating as usual.