Thousands of residents in County Limerick town advised to not drink water

Fintan Walsh, Health Correspondent

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Fintan Walsh, Health Correspondent

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fintan.walsh@limerickleader.ie

Thousands of residents in County Limerick town advised to not drink water

MORE THAN 2,500 residents in a West Limerick town have been advised to not drink domestic tap water due to increased levels of turbidity in the water.

After tests were carried out by Irish Water, the Health Service Executive (HSE) advised Irish Water and Limerick City and County Council to issue residents in Rathkeale a "Do Not Drink" notice. 

It is a precautionary measure imposed by the authorities in response to increased levels of turbidity in the raw water source in Rathkeale's public water supply, a spokesperson said this Friday evening. 

Turbidity is the measure of cloudiness of water, and can be caused by a bout of heavy rainfall, growth of algae in the water source, or materials in the water mains being disrupted. 

There is no explanation as to what caused this increased level of turbidity in Rathkeale. 

In response to this warning, Irish Water experts and Limerick City and County Council are working to "resolve this situation as soon as possible"

"Customers will notice some reduction in water pressure over the coming days and particularly at night as we carry out work to address this issue," the spokesperson said.

Ian O’Mahony, Irish Water Operations Lead for Limerick said: “This Do Not Drink notice has been issued as a precautionary measure to protect approximately 2,500 customers on the Rathkeale public water scheme. We acknowledge that this will cause inconvenience for people living in the area and would like to assure our customers that we will continue to work closely with Limerick City and County Council and the HSE to monitor the supply and lift the notice as quickly as it is safe to do so."

Advice for affected residents. Water should not be used for the following:

Drinking; preparing drinks made with water; preparation of salads and similar foods, which are not cooked prior to eating; brushing of teeth and/or gargling; making of ice. However, ensure you first discard all existing ice cubes in fridges and freezers and filtered water in fridges. And, in particular, pregnant women should not drink this water. 

The Limerick Leader will be providing updates on this issue over the weekend and until the Do Not Drink notice is lifted