E. Coli Found in Ualapue Water Source

Dept. of Water Supply News Release

The Maui County Department of Water Supply detected E. coli bacteria in the Ualapue Shaft in East Molokai.  The water in the Ualapue system is safe to drink as the water has been disinfected and no E. coli bacteria have been found in the distribution system. E. coli was detected on June 7, 2017, in a water sample collected the previous day from the Ualapue Shaft, as E. coli testing takes 18 hours to complete. The water at the Ualapue Shaft was sampled again the following day, and the resampled water was confirmed to meet Federal Environmental Protection Agency and State Department of Health water quality standards and it does not contain any trace of E. coli contamination.

The Maui County Department of Water Supply is completing a comprehensive assessment of our water system and our monitoring and operational practices to identify and correct any causes of the contamination. E. coli are bacteria whose presence indicates that the water may be contaminated with human or animal wastes. Microbes in these wastes can cause diarrhea, cramps, nausea, headaches, or other symptoms. They may pose a special health risk for infants, young children, some of the elderly, and people with severely compromised immune systems.  E. coli can also exist in tropical, subtropical, and temperate soils and may persist in soil over multiple years.

The Department extends its appreciation to its customers for their cooperation and understanding.  Please call the 24-hour hotline at 270-7633 if a water-related problem occurs or if there are any questions. General guidelines on ways to lessen the risk of infection by microbes are available by calling the EPA Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 1-800-426-4791.



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