Potentially deadly brain-eating amoeba detected in Louisiana drinking water
Officials warn residents after brain-eating amoeba was detected in Terrebonne Parish for the third time since 2015.
WWL TV reported that the water in the parish in Louisiana tested positive of the organism, Naegleria fowleri in Pointe-aux-Chenes.
Another incident of a dangerous amoeba infected the water in Terrebonne Parish has come to light with officials warning residents who are tired of living in fear.
According to the officials, the tests will continue and they will inform the residents once the water is clear again.
Consolidated Waterworks said they have switched from using chloramine to free chlorine during its disinfecting process to get rid of Naegleria fowleri.
Residents are staying away from their swimming pools and nearby bayous. This is the third attack since 2015 and it has impacted all freshwater sources in the parish including drinking water, the water in the bayous and pools and the water used for shower and baths.
Lindsey Dupre, a resident said, “It kinda freaks me out because this is my home. I can’t do what I usually do. I want to know I’m secure rather than freak out over an amoeba.”
The General Manager for Consolidated Waterworks, Michael Sobert, said that the water was “perfectly safe to drink. It’s just not safe to get up your nose.” He added that the free chlorine should get rid of the organisms.
However, it is a temporary solution to the problem. The parish lives with the fear every summer when the water gets warm. Authorities are trying to figure out a permanent solution.
The parish’s water system tested positive for the amoeba in the last fire hydrant on Island Road in Isle de Jean Charles in June last year. This time around, it was not found on Island Road.
The amoeba can cause a deadly infection that could lead to the destruction of brain tissues. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the infection could occur when a person swims in an area where the amoeba is present or when drinking water enters the nose.
The organization said that one cannot catch the infection from drinking the contaminated water.
The Louisiana Department of Health instructed its residents to avoid water going up the nose during showers, to forbid children from playing with hoses or sprinklers without any supervision, and to not submerge one’s head in the bathtub.
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