Colonial Beach, Va. residents told E.coli found in water weeks ago

COLONIAL BEACH, Va. (WJLA) - Residents of Colonial Beach in Westmoreland County were notified on Tuesday that local water samples tested positive for E.coli as far back as July 8.

"Our water system testing recently detected a fecal indicator - E.coli - in our water," a statement from the Town of Colonial Beach released on Tuesday read.

The statement indicates water samples collected on July 8 tested positive for the contaminant.

A positive test for E.coli in water could indicate traces of human or animal feces in the water, Town officials said.

"Microbes in these wastes can cause short-term health effects, such as diarrhea, cramps, nausea, headaches, or other symptoms," the statement warned. "They may pose a special health risk for infants, young children, some of the elderly, and people with severely compromised immune systems."

The Town said it is performing "system pipe flushing, increased chlorination, increased field disinfection testing, and additional follow-up/special and routine samples" to correct the situation.

In the meantime, residents have been advised to boil water before using it for certain purposes.

"Boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking, making ice, brushing teeth, washing dishes, and food preparation until further notice," the statement advised. "Boiling kills the bacteria and other organisms in the water."

The Town said it anticipates resolving the matter quickly, but said residents should continue boiling water until further notice

"We will inform you when tests show no bacteria and you no longer need to boil your water," officials said.

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