ENVIRONMENT

Expert: Contact with secondary water is no worse than river water

Aug 24, 2023, 9:30 PM

sprinkler, theres a new bill for water restrictions...

Sprinklers water a lawn in Salt Lake City on Friday, May 7, 2021. (Spenser Heaps/Deseret News)

(Spenser Heaps/Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — After the recent E. coli breakout in Lehi that resulted in the hospitalization of at least five people, is it safe to play in secondary water as long as you’re not in Lehi?

Scott Paxman, CEO of the Weber Water Conservancy Basin, tells KSL NewsRadio that contact with secondary water is no worse than river water.

 

“It’s no different than going boating, or swimming in the river, or swimming in a canal,” he said. “Or any place that has untreated water. There’s a good chance of high probability that it’s got fecal matter,” he said. 

Paxman says nothing can be done to prevent E. coli from entering the water system.

“It’s already there,” he said. “There is E. coli in every non-potable source, I can guarantee it. It’s just that we don’t talk about it. We don’t go and measure the E. coli in a river or reservoir because wastewater systems send their treated effluent into the river. We take it out and send it to our secondary system.”

Paxman says the only solution to the problem is treating every drop of water that lands in a residential yard. While that is unlikely to happen, he says the only thing that can be done is education.

“It’s making sure people understand, you don’t drink from the hose,” he said. “You don’t run through the sprinklers, or fill up your little kitty pool with secondary water and have your kitties sitting there lapping up the water. It’s not safe.”

Jeff Caplan’s Afternoon News can be heard on weekdays from 3 to 7 p.m.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Environment

An orphaned orca calf is shown in a lagoon near Zeballos, British Columbia, Canada, on Tuesday, Apr...

Sara Smart and Zoe Sottile, CNN

Rescuers in British Columbia pause efforts to save an orphaned orca calf stranded in a lagoon

A team of rescuers has suspended its efforts to save an orca calf that has been stranded for nearly two weeks in a remote lagoon.

6 hours ago

Crews started to burn approximately 2,000 acres of invasive phragmites in the Ogden Bay Wildlife M...

Mike Anderson, KSL TV

Firefighters burn invasive phragmites in Ogden Bay

Crews started to burn approximately 2,000 acres of invasive phragmites in the Ogden Bay Wildlife Management Area Friday.

8 hours ago

bald eagle...

Curt Gresseth

Who shot, killed bald eagle near Cedar City? $10,000 reward available

A $10,000 reward is available for information leading to the conviction of the perpetrator who shot and killed a protected bald eagle near Cedar City.

19 hours ago

sunshine on cherry blossoms shown, april temperatures will be a little higher this year...

Clayre Scott

Salt Lake City hit the 80s, ties date’s record high temperature

The last time it was this warm on April 12 in Salt Lake was in 1936.

21 hours ago

Pele, a gorilla and expectant mother at Hogle Zoo...

Kyle Remund

Hogle Zoo announces upcoming baby gorilla

Hogle Zoo has announced the pregnancy of Pele, an endangered western lowland gorilla. Her new baby is expected to arrive this summer.

22 hours ago

Panguitch Lake...

Kennedy Camarena

Panguitch City evacuation notice lifted as dam damage control continues

With mitigation efforts underway, evacuation notice has been lifted for Panguitch Lake and the surrounding area.

23 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Live Nation Concerts

Artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

Mother and cute toddler child in a little fancy wooden cottage, reading a book, drinking tea and en...

Visit Bear Lake

How to find the best winter lodging in Bear Lake, Utah

Winter lodging in Bear Lake can be more limited than in the summer, but with some careful planning you can easily book your next winter trip.

Happy family in winter clothing at the ski resort, winter time, watching at mountains in front of t...

Visit Bear Lake

Ski more for less: Affordable ski resorts near Bear Lake, Utah

Plan your perfect ski getaway in Bear Lake this winter, with pristine slopes, affordable tickets, and breathtaking scenery.

front of the Butch Cassidy museum with a man in a cowboy hat standing in the doorway...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Looking Back: The History of Bear Lake

The history of Bear Lake is full of fascinating stories. At over 250,000 years old, the lake has seen generations of people visit its shores.

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Expert: Contact with secondary water is no worse than river water