Sunday, November 29, 2009

Portland Water Bureau - Keeping Us All Under Water

They say its all about timing. Evidently so, as mere hours transpired on Wednesday, Nov 24, between when the Portland Water Bureau ("PWB") received a nomination by PDXTech4Good for: "outstanding job of using their website and blog, as well as Twitter, Facebook and Flickr, to educate Portland about their water supply and PWB's role in keeping Portland's drinking water flowing safely and efficiently" and PWB's discovery of E. coli in the Washington Park Reservoir. It would be a natural assumption given the recent accolade that PWB would provide immediate notice to its customers via their website and blog, as well as Twitter, Facebook and Flickr, of the emergent danger to the City's drinking water supply. Instead, on Wednesday PWB disabled all of its communication outlets and posted this:

"Happy Thanksgiving From the Portland Water Bureau.

I will be out celebrating thanksgiving with my family and friends for the rest of
this week! Blogging will resume on Monday, 11-30.

Jennie Day-Burget,
Public Information Officer"

Only late afternoon on Saturday, following a second positive test result, was the media alerted and the story broke. Still PWB did not post anything on its web site, blog, Twitter, Facebook or Flickr. Many people went unnoticed until as late as Sunday. Interesting hindsight 20/20 perspective, indeed.