Additional testing is being done on the detection of coliform bacteria in Greendale's drinking water supply. Village officials said they will have more information on Tuesday.
While coliform itself is not harmful, it can indicate the presence of other potentially harmful bacteria, and its presence is a violation of state and federal safe drinking water regulations, which is why the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources had the Village issue the precautionary measure.
Greendale Utility staff collected follow-up samples on Sept. 30. Confirmation was received on the evening of Oct. 1 as total coliform positive. With evidence the samples were coliform positive, the DNR instructed the village to issue the boil/bottle water advisory as a precautionary measure. The announcement went out at 5:30 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 2.
The Greendale Water Utility has begun work to remedy this situation and is conducting additional tests Sunday and Monday to confirm no additional bacteria are present. There will be more information released Tuesday.
Complimentary bottled water will be available for Greendale residents at the Department of Public Works, 6351 Industrial Loop in Greendale, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday, Oct. 3. Greendale public schools will be open on Monday, October 3 and bottled water will be provided to all students.
What do I need to do?
Ice, food, and any beverages prepared with unsafe water must be discarded. You should boil or use commercially bottled water for drinking, food preparation, brushing teeth, making ice, and washing hands before eating. Water does not need to be boiled for showering. If you boil water, the water should be heated to a rolling boil for at least ONE minute before use. Ice should be made from boiled or bottled water.
As a precautionary measure, consume only boiled or bottled water until sampling shows that no bacteria are present.
What is Coliform Bacteria?
Coliform bacteria are generally not harmful themselves. Coliforms are bacteria that are naturally present in the environment and are used as an indicator that other, potentially harmful, bacteria may be present. Coliforms were found in more samples than allowed and this was a warning of potential problems. Whenever we detect coliform bacteria in any sample, we do follow-up testing to see if other bacteria of greater concern, such as fecal coliform or E. coli, are present. The Village did not find any fecal coliform or E. coli in our subsequent testing.
For more information: Questions regarding this precautionary boil/bottle water advisory should be directed to the Village of Greendale at 414-423-2100; the Greendale Water Utility at 414-423-2135; or the Greendale Health Department at 414-423-2110.