In accordance with the National Primary Drinking Water Regulations, the Otoe County Rural Water Districts 1 and 2 public water supply system in Otoe County is hereby making public notice of the violation of drinking water microbiological standards.
The violation consists of the detection of E.coli bacteria in its distribution system during the month of May 2018.
Therefor, all people using water in Otoe County Rural Water Districts 1 and 2 must boil their water before using it to cook or to drink until further notice.
This period will last for at least seven days from the boil order, which occurred on Wednesday, May 16.
Otoe County Rural Water Districts 1 and 2 include residents east of Dunbar to the river, but not including Nebraska City, and residents south of Nebraska City to the county line.
Bring all water to a boil and let it boil for one minute and let it cool before using. Boiled water should be used for drinking, making ice, brushing teeth, washing dishes and food preparations. Boiling kills bacteria and other organisms in the water.
E.coli are bacteria whose presence indicates the water may be contaminated with human or animal waste. Human pathogens in these wastes can cause short term effects such as diarrhea, cramps, nausea, headaches and other symptoms. They may pose a special health risk for infants, young children, some of the elderly and people with severely compromised immune systems.
If you experience any of these symptoms, and they persist, you may want to seek medical advice. People at increased risk should seek advice from health car providers about their drinking water.
Bacterial contamination can occur when increased run-off enters the drinking water source (for example, heavy rains). It can also happen due to a break in the distribution system (pipes) or a failure in the water treatment process.
E.coli bacteria was found, indicating the need to look for potential problems in water treatment or distribution. When this occurs, the provider is required to conduct an assessment to identify problems and to correct problems during these assessments.
The Otoe County Rural Water District 1 and 2 public water supply system is continuing to test and is working with the Drinking Water Program to identify the source of the problem and return to the water supply system to compliance. The public will be informed when tests show no further contamination and when normal water practices (without boiling) can begin. General guidelines on ways to lessen the risk of infection of microbes are available from EPA’s Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 800-426-4791. Members of the public can also contact Ed Rowen at 402-209-0107.