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The original item was published from 9/25/2020 11:56:18 PM to 9/26/2020 11:56:57 AM.

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Posted on: September 25, 2020

[ARCHIVED] TCEQ: Stop using BWA tap water immediately

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Do Not Use Water Advisory issued for Brazosport Water Authority users

Texas Commission on Environmental Quality sent this bulletin at 09/25/2020 10:42 PM CDT

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Do Not Use Water Advisory issued for Brazosport Water Authority users

At 9:30 p.m. Friday the Brazosport Water Authority was informed of naegleria fowleri, a brain-eating amoeba in the water supply. As a result the Brazosport Water Authority is issuing a Do Not Use advisory for all water in the following cities: Lake Jackson, Freeport, Angleton, Brazoria, Richwood, Oyster Creek, Clute, Rosenburg, Dow Chemical, TDCJ Clemens and TDCJ Wayne Scott.

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality at the direction of the Governor’s Office, is working with Brazosport Water Authority to resolve the issue as quickly as possible.

In a do not use water advisory, citizens in the impacted area are urged not to drink or use the tap water from the impacted system for any purpose for the duration of the advisory, including for bathing. Flushing the toilet is OK.

The do not use advisory will remain in place until the water system has been adequately flushed and samples indicate that the water is safe to use. It is not known at this time how long this may take, but the health and safety of the public water system’s customers is TCEQ’s priority

More information will be made available on Facebook and Twitter.


The Brazosport Facts 9/25/2020

  • SAnyone who gets their tap water from Brazosport Water Authority should discontinue its use immediately, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality announced late Friday night.

The commission informed the authority of a potential naegleria fowleri, a brain-eating amoeba, in the water supply after 9 p.m. Friday.

The water authority said it had been informed of a potential primary amebic meningoencephalitis at 10 p.m. Friday, the authority announced. TCEQ asked the authority to issue a "do not use" advisory for all water it supplies, the statement said. 

The cities and agencies that get water from Brazosport Water Authority include Lake Jackson, Freeport, Angleton, Brazoria, Richwood, Oyster Creek, Clute Rosenberg, Dow Chemical, Texas Department of Criminal Justice Clemens and Wayne Scott units.

Residents of the impacted area are advised to not use tap water for any reason, including bathing, but flushing the toilet is OK, the TCEQ statement said.

Water authority staff will work with TCEQ as soon as possible, BWA Chief Operator Felix Davis said from the plant in Lake Jackson after 11 p.m. Friday. He did not know whether TCEQ personnel would arrive Friday night or early Saturday morning, but they intend to get water restored as soon as possible, he said. 

The do-not-use advisory will remain in place until the water system is flushed and samples indicate that the water is safe to use, TCEQ said on Twitter. 

 
“It is not known at this time how long this may take,” the statement said. “The health and safety of the public water system’s customers is TCEQ’s priority.”

Naegleria fowleri is a free-living microscopic amoeba, or single-celled living organism, that can cause a rare and devastating infection of the brain called primary amebic meningoencephalitis, according to the CDC.

“We will continue to work with the Centers of Disease Control and the Texas Department of State Health Services and TCEQ to ensure the water supply is restored to normal use as quickly as possible,” the statement from Brazosport Water Authority said. “The Brazosport Water Authority will continue to provide updates to the public as we work to resolve this situation.”

 Maddy McCarty is assistant managing editor for The Facts. Contact her at 979-237-0151. 

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