The Provincial Capitol will improve the water source in Sitio Bayabas, Barangay Subayon, Toledo City by covering its contaminated deep well and installing a jetmatic pump.
Fecal coliform and e-coli contamination in the water sourced from the deep well, affected 31 residents, 14 of which were admitted to the Toledo City Hospital.
The Provincial Health Office (PHO) dispatched an epidemiological team to the Toledo City Hospital to check on the laboratory results of the patients and gave out analgesics, antibiotics and vitamins to the patients last March 14. The team made a follow-up last March 16.
“The results showed that the victims are negative of typhoid fever,” said Cyril Kay Pangatungan, a PHO nurse.
Engr. Rey Mariñas, head of the Waterworks and Hydrology Section of the Provincial Engineer’s Office’s (PEO) – Construction Division, said that the well will be covered and a jetmatic pump will be installed. Works will probably start anytime next week after the materials have been purchased.
Prior to this, however, the well will undergo a testing process, which involves subjecting it to a “shock dose” of chlorine treatment. Since there is a need for water for other uses aside from drinking, the type of shock dose to be used will immediately determine either the presence or absence of contaminant after only one-hour contact once the source is cleaned.
Meanwhile, the residents in the area were given mineral water for drinking by the city government.
“They are also advised to boil the water from the well for 10 to 15 minutes should there be a shortage of mineral water for drinking,” Provincial Health Officer Cynthia Genosolango said.
Another option, which the PEO is eyeing if the existing well proves to be a hopeless case, is to look for another source in the vicinity that is free from contamination. This will, however, depend on the findings of the team that is inspecting the area and administering the necessary tests.
If viable and the program of works are approved, works on the new source of water will start in less than a month or so.
Another recommendation that is being considered is to build a communal toilet for the residents near the existing source of water to avoid possible future contamination.