Carterton District Council has reissued a boil water notice after receiving a low-level E. coli sample reading at 1.30pm Wednesday. This will remain in place until further notice.

This means Carterton urban residents must boil all water before being used for drinking, making baby formula, juice, ice, washing fruit and vegetables, other food preparation/cooking needs, or brushing teeth.

The Drinking Water Standard for New Zealand require E.Coli levels to be less than 1 MPN/100ml (Most Probable Number). Today’s sample reading was at 1 MPN/100ml. The risk to the community is extremely low but the Council is taking a precautionary approach.

The Council has consulted with Regional Public Health and external senior water engineers to do everything possible to identify the source and take the best action for the community.

Infrastructure, Services and Regulatory Manager Dave Gittings said remedial action had been taken since the first elevated E. coli reading last Friday.

“We’re not getting elevated E. coli readings out of the bores or the Kaipatangata supply and we have had clear samples every day since last Friday,” he said.

“We’re doing everything we can to identify the source, and we will hold the boil water notice in place until we’re confident we’ve done this and eliminated the low-level E. coli bacteria.”

At this stage, the Council has not received any official reports of illness in relation to this event.

Boiling water before use is the best way to make water safe. The risk of getting sick from drinking the water is low but possible, especially for vulnerable people. Babies, young children, pregnant women, the elderly and people who have weakened immune systems are more at risk of illness. If you get diarrhoea, vomiting and/or a fever, get advice from your doctor or contact Healthline (0800 611 116).

How to boil water for drinking:

  • Boiling will kill all disease-causing organisms.
  • Bring water to a rolling boil (where bubbles appear in the centre and do not disappear when the water is stirred) for one minute or boil a full electric jug until it switches off
  • Cool water (do not use ice cubes to do this) and pour into clean container with a lid
  • Refrigerate until needed.

If you experience diarrhoea, vomiting and/or a fever, contact your doctor or Healthline (0800 611 116).

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