“Crisis upon crisis”: Industrial pollutants leave San Angelo residents without water as winter storm bears down

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Amber Campos moves a pallet of bottled water from a semi-trailer truck at the loading dock of the H-E-B grocery store at in San Angelo on Tuesday. Many residents have been unable to use water from their faucets for days due to contamination. Credit: Colin Murphey/San Angelo Standard-Times via REUTERS

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Residents of San Angelo, a West Texas city in the Concho Valley, have gone days without safe drinking water after city officials discovered industrial chemicals contaminated the water system.

The crisis — which stretches into at least its fifth day Friday — in the city of 101,000 people has left residents frustrated and scared after the city told them Monday night to cease all uses of water other than flushing their toilets. They were also told that first boiling the water before use would not make it usable and, instead, only more dangerous.