UPDATE: Southeast Sierra Vista neighborhood warned of possible E - Tucson News Now

UPDATE: Southeast Sierra Vista neighborhood warned of possible E. coli in water system

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SIERRA VISTA, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

UPDATE, 8/10: According to Keith Dojaquez of East Slope Water Co., the affected area is smaller than originally reported and the boundaries are Camino Principal to the north, Calle Segundo to the south, San Pedro Rd to the east and Highway 92 to the west. Approximately 125 people were affected.

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Some East Slope Water Company customers in Cochise County are advised to boil their water until further notice due to a possible presence of E. coli in the water system, according to Cochise Health and Social Services.

The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality says a monthly water test from Aug. 7 found E. coli bacteria in the water system in a southeast Sierra Vista neighborhood in the service area between Camino Principal and Ramsey Road, east of Highway 92. View the map of the affected area here: http://bit.ly/1lIVaQt.

CHSS was notified on Friday. It says the best way to safely use the water is to bring it to a full boil for one minute and let it cool before using. The boiling kills E. coli bacteria and coliforms. Bottled water is another safe alternative. Boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking, making ice, brushing teeth, washing dishes, and for food preparation, according to a news release.

The utility company suspects the problem occurred in a hydromatic tank where routine chlorination occurs, and not in a sealed well. Officials say a valve might have gotten stuck and allowed untreated water to pass through the tank, though the system is going through tests to confirm the cause.

The utility company notified all affected customers by going door to door to review safe water procedures. The company says the disinfection efforts will take two to five days.

County Environmental Health Services visited all commercial establishments served by the East Slope Water Company to make sure proper procedures are met. Staff members tracked gastrointestinal illnesses in that neighborhood during the last six weeks and no increase in cases was noted, according to officials.

Customers can contact the utility company at (520) 623-5172 or the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality at (602) 771-4572.

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