Staff Reports

Hospital’s incident command group kicks into gear

Columbus Regional Hospital, notified by the City of Columbus late Friday afternoon of its boil-water advisory, quickly mobilized its incident command group — with included departments such as facilities, housekeeping and patient-care groups — to determine a course of action, a hospital spokeswoman said.Anthony Pope, director of protective services and emergency preparedness at Columbus Regional Health, was contacted by the city — which set the hospital group’s planning into motion, said Kelsey DeClue, spokeswoman for Columbus Regional.

“We pulled together very quickly,” she said.

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Immediate steps taken by the hospital included shutting down icemakers and coffee machines, and notifying patients that they should not drink tap water in their hospital rooms, De Clue said, which she described as one-on-one, caretaker-to-patient reinforcement.

“Everything is running smoothly. Our supplies are good,” DeClue said about 11:30 a.m. Saturday.

The hospital already had some bottled water and ice on hand. But unsure how long the boil-water advisory might last, Pope jumped into purchasing mode Friday night and ordered about 220 gallons of water — 160 cases with 48 bottles each — from Culligan, DeClue said, and about 1,500 pounds of ice.

Combo meals with a cold can of pop

Since restaurant fountain drinks are made with running water, Friday’s boil-water advisory sent local restaurant managers into backup mode.The McDonald’s restaurant at 611 Third St. in Columbus closed down its fountain drinks late Friday afternoon after learning of the city’s boil-water advisory, said Todd Stinson, a supervisor for the downtown restaurant.

The order also meant no smoothies or ice for customers.

It also placed signs explaining the situation for customers at the restaurant’s entrance, as well as on the fountain drink dispenser.

Customers who might have worried that they’d have nothing to wash down their burgers and fries learned that they didn’t have to fret at all.

Instead of pouring Coke products from the self-serve fountain machines, the restaurant went out and bought 12-ounce cans of Coke products and served them chilled as part of combo meals, Stinson said.

“Business is normal,” he said mid-afternoon Saturday.