Concerns about E.coli in Bloem drinking water

2016-11-16 11:52
(File, Lucky Nxumalo, City Press)

(File, Lucky Nxumalo, City Press)

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Bloemfontein - The drinking water in parts of Bloemfontein was a dirty brown on Tuesday. In addition, a report on the quality of the city’s drinking water is said to have found some signs of E.coli in it, Netwerk24 reports.

Spokesperson Qondile Khedama wouldn’t confirm or deny that E.coli was found in water drawn for testing at several points.

He also wouldn't respond to queries about fears that some areas would be without water despite the recent good rains.

Acting city manager, Tankiso Mea, said although the Boskop reservoir’s levels were low, “we are watching it closely to make sure there are no disruptions”.

Mea said he wasn’t aware of any E.coli in the potable water, but undertook to ask Bloemwater, which supplies the city’s water, for feedback.

Volksblad reliably learnt that chemicals such as chlorine and lime in Bloemfontein’s water had to be increased on Tuesday to wipe out any traces of E.coli. The quality, it was reported, should be fine from Wednesday.

A laboratory confirmed that more chemicals had been added to the drinking water.

However, no one want to confirm the presence of E.coli in the water.

DA councillor Rossouw Botes confirmed that several people had contacted him about the colour of the water.

He said when he’d queried it, he was told that the necessary investigations were being done to solve the problem.

Botes said on Tuesday afternoon that residents of Pellissier, a suburb which had been without water for the day, phoned him to say the water supply had been restored.

Earlier, Botes warned that the Brandkop reservoir, which supplies 69% of the city’s water, was almost dry at just between 3- and 4% of capacity.

Bloemwater’s communications manager, Pule Mlambo, denied this.

“The Brandkop reservoir is more than 60% full,” he said.

Mlambo also gave the assurance that the water sold to the metro was clean and safe for human consumption.

“The problem is that the water at the Welbedacht treatment plant has to be properly controlled and managed after recent rains so that just enough is let through for purification at any given time.”

He also denied that there was E.coli in the potable water.

Read more on:    bloemfontein  |  pollution  |  water

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