Colorado town responds to water crisis
| 03.27.2008 | 09:38:17 | Views: 3068 | ID:
March 27 '08: National Public Radio reported on one Colorado town's water emergency after medical officials found the drinking supply to be contaminated with salmonella bacteria. Alamosa City officials are now responding to the emergency by flushing pipes with chlorine the Los Angeles Times reported. Officials said that it might take weeks to clean the water.
So far, over 200 people have been sickened by the water, with 68 confirmed cases of the salmonella from lab results, the Associated Press reported. Colorado Governor Bill Ritter said $300,000 in state funds along with the activation of the Colorado National Guard would be used to help the city respond.According to the University of Minnesota's Center for Infectious Disease Research & Policy (CIDRAP), the specific type of salmonella strain was not identified by officials from the Centers for Disease Control, however, they were investigating a possible link between the Colorado cases and dozens of other cases in Canada resulting from contaminated cantaloupe from Honduras. Meanwhile, the city has instituted a series of public announcements and cleanup schedules on its official website. The cleanup process, the Denver Post reported will "leave about 10,000 people with water unfit for drinking or washing." However, the highly chlorinated water (25 parts per million) will be flushable in toilets. "The highly chlorinated water will be followed with a flush of water at 10 parts per mission of chlorine. ... Once the system is filled with the less-chlorinated water," the Post continued, "the pipes will have to soak for 24 hours before being flushed with clean water, containing 1 to 2 parts per million of chlorine." Officials said the cleaning process is complicated because there are plastic, copper and iron pipes which carry the water to residents' homes and businesses. ABC News said that in cooperation with the state government, city officials have "set up water distribution centers throughout the city and [have] brought in massive amounts of bottled water. Tanker trucks are doling out 8,000 to 10,000 gallons of bottled water each day," according to reports from Associated Press. National Blueprint Tags: Economic & Infrastructure, Public Health & Medical.
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