Health Board: Kuressaare tap water safe to drink once again

Tap water (photo is illustrative).
Tap water (photo is illustrative). Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

Tap water in Kuresaare, capital of Saaremaa, was declared safe to drink again Saturday, following a second outbreak of e-coli contamination.

The decision, made by the Health Board (Tervisamet) followed repeat samples taken from drinking water in Kuresaare Friday returning clear.

The town had seen a ban on consuming tap water back in May, after a widespread e-coli outbreak, thought to have derived from a sewage leak into the water supply.

At that time, freshwater tanks were made available to the public while the decontamination process went on; several people were hospitalized as a result of the outbreak.

On Friday last week, the Health Board also started chlorine to the town's drinking water supply, after declaring it safe to drink.

The day before, local residents had been advised to boil tap water before drinking it after tests returned e-coli traces.

Mikk Tuisk, the island's mayor, said that this may have been residual pollution from the outbreak in May.

Kuresaare has a population of around 13,000, compared with the island's permanent overall population of a little over 31,000. The e-coli outbreak concerned the island's capital and environs; other providers supply water to residents in other parts of the 2,673  square-kilometer island, and many of those living in more outlying areas obtain their water from wells.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte, Marko Tooming

Source: 'Aktuaalne kaamera', reporter Margus Muld.

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