A boil water advisory is in place for Michael's Shell Station at 5680 Post Road in Charlestown because E. coli bacteria was found in the water supply.
Customers should not drink any water from the faucets. The deli in the station is required to boil vigorously, for at least one minute, all water used for consumption. Alternatively, customers and the deli can use bottled water. These recommendations pertain to water used for drinking, cooking, making ice, brushing teeth, washing dishes, and food preparation. Boiling kills bacteria and other organisms in the water. Additional guidance is available online. (See related links below.)
The station collected a routine coliform bacteria sample on 10/22 that was positive for E. coli bacteria. Two of four repeat samples collected on 10/24 were positive for total coliform bacteria. The Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) will be inspecting the water system on Monday 10/29. The health advisory will remain in effect until RIDOH and the water system investigate the source of the bacteria, the water system completes corrective actions including disinfection of the water system, collects three consecutive days of absent bacteria samples, and RIDOH approves the boil advisory to be lifted. (The three days of sampling doesn't start until after disinfection, flushing, and any other corrective action is completed.).
The presence of E. coli bacteria indicates that the water may be contaminated with human or animal waste. Microbes in these wastes can cause short-term health effects, such as diarrhea, cramps, nausea, headaches, or other symptoms. They pose a special health risk for infants, young children, and people with severely compromised immune systems. The EPA has set a drinking water standard for E. coli to reduce the risk of these adverse health effects. Under this standard, drinking water must be free of these bacteria for water to be consumed from a system.
A healthcare provider should be contacted if someone is on this water systems and has diarrhea and any of the following symptoms:
- Fever over 101.5° F, measured orally - Blood in the stool - Prolonged vomiting that prevents keeping liquids down (which can lead to dehydration) - Signs of dehydration, including a decrease in urination, a dry mouth and throat, and feeling dizzy when standing up - Diarrheal illness that lasts more than 3 days
Customers with questions should contact Paul Fazio at 401-322-1889.