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Latest water test results: April 28- negative

Our latest test on April 28 was negative for total coliform, which means it was also negative for E. coli.  The state currently requires the district to submit a sample every two weeks.  Our last positive test was on October 14, 2020.  It was positive for total coliform and E. coli.  The follow-up tests were negative.

We will continue to post our latest test result here.  If we have a positive test result, we will also send an email to all our email subscribers.  

If you are not on our email list and wish to be added, please notify us at orwdnews@gmail.com.

After reviewing our water test records, Oregon Health Authority Drinking Water Services decided to require a routine test every two weeks, instead of the monthly test previously required.  This testing frequency may be increased further if we have positive tests. After the new chlorination facility is operating later this year, the testing frequency may be reduced.  Most chlorinated systems submit a monthly test. 

Each sample is submitted to a state-certified laboratory and checked for the presence of coliform bacteria and E. coli bacteria.  If the test is negative for both, it is reported as "total coliform absent".  If coliform bacteria  are detected, it is reported as "total coliform positive" and then the presence or absence of E. coli is also reported.  Most often, even if total coliform is positive, E. coli remains absent.  

A positive total coliform test indicates that a source of contamination may exist either in the distribution system or at the water source.  This can result from leaks in the distribution system, backflow from a customer's pipes, surface water getting into a water source, etc.  A positive E. coli test indicates not only a possible source of contamination, but the presence of fecal bacteria from animals or humans.  The strain of E. coli is rarely, if ever, a disease-causing (enteropathogenic) strain.  But it indicates there may be a risk of transmission of fecally-transmitted disease, whether bacterial or viral.  In either case, follow-up samples are required.

This district submits its routine tests in rotation from three established sites in our community distribution system.  If total coliform is detected, the presence or absence of E. coli is also reported.  After a positive test, samples from all three community sites and all sources in use (usually two of our three springs) must be submitted.  Confirmed postive tests are investigated by Lincoln County Environmental Health to identify possible causes and remedial actions.

If E. coli is detected, and if any of the follow-up samples also show E. coli, a boil water notice must be issued until effective remedial action has been demonstrated..