Residents in Brixham warned to boil tap water after cryptosporidium detected

South West Water are advising residents in the Alston and Hillhead areas of Brixham to not drink tap water without first boiling it and also allowing it to cool after finding traces of cryptosporidium in the water supply

Residents in the Alston and Hillhead areas of Brixham are urged to take precautionary measures following the discovery of cryptosporidium in the tap water. This parasite, known to cause gastrointestinal issues, has led to an outbreak in the coastal town.

South West Water initially reported clear results from their water supply tests, reassuring customers of its safety. However, subsequent testing revealed 'small traces' of cryptosporidium in Alston and the Hillhead area. The water provider is actively investigating the contamination's source.

As a preventive measure, residents in the affected areas are advised to boil tap water before consumption, cooking, or dental hygiene. Bottled water stations have been set up to support those impacted.

The UK Health Security Agency has confirmed cases of the infection and associated symptoms in Brixham. Collaborative efforts are underway with local authorities and health organisations to address the situation.

Sarah Bird from the UKHSA emphasises the importance of managing symptoms at home for most cases. However, individuals experiencing severe symptoms are encouraged to seek medical advice promptly.

Efforts are ongoing to identify the source of contamination and ensure the safety of the water supply. Residents are urged to stay informed through official channels for updates on the situation.

Advice issued by SWW to residents in Alston and the Hillhead:

  • We ask that customers informed of the notice do not drink tap water without first boiling it and allowing it to cool.
  • This should also be done for preparing or cooking food or cleaning teeth. Boiled water can be stored in a covered container in the fridge for 24 hours.
  • Water can continue to be used as normal for washing, bathing and toilet flushing.
  • If people have consumed the water and feel unwell, we advise they contact their GP
  • Boil water notices will be hand-delivered to affected customers and the postcodes impacted by the notice are listed on our website.

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