Maine Water Co. is responding to coronavirus by closing its offices and suspending service shutoffs for nonpayment of water bills.

The Saco-based utility says it wants to make sure customers have tap water for hand-washing to protect their health from the virus, which has infected about 155,000 people around the globe. Maine Water, which has nearly 32,000 customers, provides water to roughly 80,000 Mainers, many of them in the Biddeford-Saco area and the Camden-Rockport area.

“We are committed to providing the same vital public service we do 24/7 despite the spread of COVID-19,” the disease caused by the coronavirus, Rick Knowlton, president of Maine Water, said in a news release Saturday.

Maine Water is also suspending nonessential service appointments, such as periodic meter changes, until the crisis passes.

For essential service appointments, “If our people need to enter a customer’s home, they will ask a few simple questions about potential exposure to the coronavirus for their and other customers’ safety,” the company said.

All employees capable of telecommuting will do so starting on Monday.


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