05/13/2015 14:29 EDT | Updated 05/13/2016 01:12 EDT

Patched-up ferry restores lifeline for Ontario First Nation without safe water

SHOAL LAKE, Ont. - A reserve under one of Canada's longest boil-water advisories has patch-up its aging ferry after being cut off from the outside world.Shoal Lake 40 First Nation declared a state of emergency after the ferry connecting it to the mainland failed a federal inspection at the end of April.Chief Erwin Redsky says the ferry has been repaired and is back in the water but only in a limited capacity.He says it's a relief to everyone in the community, especially elders who had been evacuated when the ferry was pulled out of service.Shoal Lake 40 was cut off from the mainland a century ago to build an aqueduct which supplies the city of Winnipeg with fresh water.The reserve, which straddles the Ontario-Manitoba boundary, has no all-weather road and has been under a boil-water advisory for 17 years.