Wastewater study shows coronavirus levels falling in many smaller towns

Paljassaare waste water treatment plant in North Tallinn.
Paljassaare waste water treatment plant in North Tallinn. Source: Kaupo Kalda/Tallinna Vesi

Traces of coronavirus in wastewater have fallen to 'moderate' levels in most small towns in eastern and southern Estonia, the Health Board's (Terviseamet) weekly survey reports.

The town of Türi, Järva County, for instance, reported negligible figures for Covid vectors in this week's survey, which studies wastewater (i.e. sewage) across Estonia, for traces of coronavirus.

Levels in Estonia's larger cities are often still high, however.

Tallinn, Pärnu, Narva, Kohtla-Järve and Viljandi all still have high levels of Covid, though Tartu, Estonia's second-largest city, only reported a moderate level this week.

Maardu, to the east of Tallinn, and Loksa, further east still, in Lääne-Viru County, both had very high levels, the survey found.

While most smaller towns as noted saw limited traces of Covid in their wastewater, Sillamäe, Ida-Viru County, Kärdla, Hiuumaa, along with Rapla and Põlva, both in counties of the same name, had widespread levels.

Covid levels in wastewater traffic-light system for week ending March 25 2022. Source: Health Board

The Health Board took over the coronavirus wastewater survey from the University of Tartu early on this year.

Instead of the 60 samples used previously, an average of 34 samples per week is now taken. The available information is entered visually on a monitoring card , which can be found on the Health Board's website.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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