Members of the Michigan National Guard are headed to Flint to help dole out bottled water, filters and other supplies to residents dealing with a drinking water crisis that began months ago.

Gov. Rick Snyder late Tuesday activated the National Guard, and some members were expected to arrive as soon as Wednesday to assist state authorities and volunteers in the distribution effort that is already underway.

Flint’s tap water became contaminated with too much lead after the city switched its water supply in 2014 to save money while under state financial management. Local officials first declared a public health emergency in October in response to tests that showed children with elevated levels of lead.

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