785 customers removed from Lough Talt boil water notice, remaining customers reminded to continue boiling water before use

Irish Water working in partnership with Sligo and Mayo County Councils can confirm that customers in the Bellaghy area are now being supplied a clean and safe water supply from the Charlestown public water supply. This has been made possible due to the cross co-operation of both Sligo and Mayo County Councils working in partnership with Irish Water.

This means that approximately 785 customers in the Bellaghy area do not need to continue boiling water before consumption and will remain on the Charlestown supply until further notice.

Areas being removed from the boil water notice

The areas being removed from the boil water notice include Bellaghy, Sandyhill, Cloonaughill, Cully, the southern 80% part of Bunnacrannagh, Brackloonagh, Brogher, Lissard, and Curryfuel. Irish Water will telephone or write to the customers in the Bunnacrannagh area who are being removed from the Boil Water Notice and customers who reside in this area are advised to keep boiling water before consumption until they receive either a call or letter from Irish Water.
The remaining customers on the Lough Talt supply are reminded to continue boiling water until further notice.
The provision of clean drinking water is vital to our daily lives and Irish Water’s mission is that all of our customers receive a safe and reliable supply of drinking water.

Why was the boil water notice was put in place?

The boil water notice was put in place on February 5 following a detection of cryptosporidium during routine sampling at the water treatment plant. An increased continuous weekly sampling plan was implemented and five further detections of cryptosporidium were found both at the plant and in the supply network. Following further consultation with the HSE, it was advised that the boil water notice should remain in place until mid-may to coincide with the high risk cryptosporidium season. Continued sampling occurred over a total period of 16 weeks. Zero detections have been recorded since March 7 representing 10 successive weeks of clear sampling through the high risk cryptosporidium season.
The HSE have informed Irish Water they are investigating reported cases of cryptosporidiosis in the community and while the source of transmission is unclear at this point, in the interest of public health the HSE advised that the notice continues for another four weeks. Sampling will continue during this time and all results will be reviewed by the relevant stakeholders.
The level of treatment currently provided at the Lough Talt water treatment plant does not provide adequate protection against cryptosporidium. Irish Water is advising customers that in the absence of a validated cryptosporidium barrier there is a risk of further cryptosporidium detections in the supply.

Planning application lodged for emergency water treatment plant

Irish Water will be lodging a planning application to Sligo County Council in the coming days for the provision of an emergency water treatment plant to address the absence of an effective crypto barrier and also to provide mitigation against the formation of Trihalomethanes (THMs).
Customers are reminded to continue to boil water before consumption including the washing of teeth, making of ice and in the preparation of food that is not cooked. It is imperative that people adhere to the boil water notice.
A map of the scheme is available on the Irish Water and Sligo County Council’s websites.
 Irish Water and Sligo County Council sincerely apologise to all customers for any inconvenience caused by this Boil Water Notice.

Water must be boiled for: 

  • Drinking 
  • Drinks made with water 
  • Preparation of salads and similar foods, which are not cooked prior to eating 
  • Brushing of teeth 
  • Making of ice 
  • Discard ice cubes in fridges and freezers and filtered water in fridges. Make ice from cooled boiled water. 

What actions should be taken:

  • Use water prepared for drinking when preparing foods that will not be cooked (e.g. washing salads). 
  • Water can be used for personal hygiene, bathing and flushing of toilets but not for brushing teeth or gargling. 
  • Boil water by bringing to a vigorous, rolling boil (e.g. with an automatic kettle) and allow to cool. Cover and store in a refrigerator or cold place. Water from the hot tap is not safe to drink. Domestic water filters will not render water safe to drink. 
  • Caution should be taken when bathing children to ensure that they do not swallow the bathing water. 
  • Prepare infant feeds with water that has been brought to the boil once and cooled. Do not use water that has been re-boiled several times. Bottled water can be used to make up infant formula. All bottled water, with the exception of natural mineral water, is regulated to the same standard as drinking water. It is best not to use bottled water labelled as ‘Natural Mineral Water’ as it can have high levels of sodium (salt) and other minerals, although it rarely does. ‘Natural Mineral Water’ can be used if no other water is available, for as short a time as possible, as it is important to keep babies hydrated. If bottled water is used to make up infant formula it should be boiled once (rolling boil for 1 minute), and cooled in the normal way. 

Anyone suffering from diarrhoea for more than two days should contact their general practitioner and provide a stool sample for testing. They should continue to drink plenty of boiled or bottled water. 
Great care should be taken with boiled water to avoid burns and scalds as accidents can easily happen, especially with children. 
Further information and additional advice for customers is available on our Boil Water Notice section or by calling 1850 278 278.

Mayo, Sligo

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