Update from 26.09.2018, 16.37 o'clock: boil water ban must be maintained
Based on the current results of the microbiological drinking water tests conducted on monday at the high reservoir in zellingen, the boiling ban must be maintained for all affected communities. In the district of wurzburg, these are eisingen, erlabrunn, helmstadt with holzkirchhausen, hettstadt, hochberg, kist, leinach, neubrunn with bottigheim, thungersheim, uettingen, waldbuttelbrunn with robbrunn and madelhofen, and in the district of main-spessart, retzbach with zellingen.
Two colonies of enterococci were found in monday's sample. This positive finding will now be analyzed further by the bavarian state office for health and food safety (LGL). As soon as the results are available, they will be published.
As explained in yesterday's meeting with the mayors of the affected municipalities and in yesterday's press interview, the boil-off ban can only be lifted if there is a constant presence of sufficient chlorine levels and constant unobjectionable microbiological findings.
This is now not the case as was still hoped yesterday. However, safe drinking water is paramount, so authorities must insist on the boiling requirement.
Update from 21.09.2018, 16.08 a.M.: boil until next week – where do the germs come from??
The health authorities of main-spessart and the city and district of wurzburg have reached agreement with fernwasserversorgung mittelmain (M) on the further measures to be taken in order to be able to lift the boil-off ban as soon as possible. This was announced by the two district authorities and the fernwasserversorgung mittelmain in a joint press release.
Continuation of chlorination is necessary to eliminate the germ contamination in the long term. Due to the very extensive network of pipelines, a "longer period of time" is unfortunately required for the protection of the population. The day before it was announced that the boiling ban would be maintained until the following week.
First results of drinking water tests in the coming week
The drinking water is also extensively tested for bacteria on a daily basis. Initial results are expected in the course of the coming week.
For safe drinking water, it is still necessary to maintain the boiling ban in the affected communities (eisingen, erlabrunn, helmstadt with holzkirchhausen, hettstadt, hochberg, kist, leinach, neubrunn with bottigheim, thungersheim, uettingen, waldbuttelbrunn with robbrunn and madelhofen) probably until next week.
Only when the chlorine content is constantly sufficient and the microbiological findings in the local network of the respective municipalities are constantly unobjectionable can the boil-off ban be lifted, according to the press release.
Causal research: where do the germs come from??
At the same time, research into the causes is currently running at full speed in cooperation with the authorities and specialist institutes. The reason for the germ contamination could not be found yet.
The hotline of the health office wurzburg is still available at the telephone number 0931/8003-5984 on saturday and sunday from 9 a.M. To 2 p.M. For questions.
Update from 20.9.2018, 16:03: boiling ban for drinking water in the western district of wurzburg remains in place
The wurzburg district office reports that the drinking water in some communities continues to be contaminated. The boil-off ban will remain in effect "until next week" remain.
After the discovery of a "slight exceedance of the limit value for enterococci in drinking water the boiling ban in the following municipalities of the wurzburg district is expected to remain in place until next week:
Eisingen, erlabrunn, helmstadt with holzkirchhausen, hettstadt, hochberg, kist, leinach, neubrunn with bottigheim, thungersheim, uettingen, waldbuttelbrunn with robbrunn and madelhofen.
The health department's hotline can be reached at 0931/8003-5984 from 9 a.M. To 2 p.M. Friday through sunday for questions.
Original announcement: drinking water in communities in lower franconia contaminated with fakal germs
Edith franz from leinach is angry. She is one of the nearly 50.000 affected in the western district of wurzburg and in the district of main-spessart, who have had to boil their tap water for several days because it is contaminated with fakal germs. The in turn can cause nausea and diarrhea.
Drinking water in lower franconia: many communities still affected
Franz accuses the municipality of failing to inform its citizens immediately and adequately about the acute danger. The cause has still not been found, experts are currently trying to get the bacteria under control with the appropriate amounts of chlorine. In the municipality of zell (district of wurzburg), the boil ban was lifted on tuesday evening.
Drinking water contaminated: edith franz only learned of the danger by chance
The warning was given to the local press on friday at 14 o'clock. Because edith franz from leinach neither listens to the radio nor surfs the internet at this time, she only learned of the danger from her own water tap on saturday through a chance call from her children in munich. Your family currently has diarrhea, as do your neighbors. Whether it has to do with the water is unclear. She should contact her family doctor, she was told by the contact person on the health department's hotline, when she finally got someone on the line after countless attempts.
Edith franz is not alone in her anger. Residents of other communities are also angry. They were informed about the danger much too late and inadequately. There were no loudspeaker announcements or warnings by handbill on friday, he said, even in hochberg. More than 60 complaints have been received by the municipality there so far. Mayor peter stichler confirms that he and his employees are sometimes subjected to massive accusations.
Fear of hysteria: no public drinking water warnings
Stichler was already aware of the contaminated water on friday afternoon via an email from the operator, but decided against making a loudspeaker announcement using a fire truck. "I had no further information or clear instructions from the fernwasserversorgung or the landratsamt on what to do", according to the mayor. "We spread hysteria when we drive through the community and say that the water is contaminated."
In addition, he had only been informed by the responsible remote water supply mittelmain and only by email. "If I did not also work on the weekend, I had not known anything at all." Today, he says, he realizes that arranging a loudspeaker drive would have been a good way to quickly reach even those citizens who do not listen to the radio or are on social networks. He understands that the citizens are up in arms.
Stichler demands to speak with the responsible authorities. The creation of a master plan is urgently needed. "I would like to know how we should act in such cases in the future. This requires quick and clear instructions from the relevant authorities." The health department had only on monday afternoon the fire departments of the affected communities a corresponding file for loudspeaker announcements available. Reiner reichert, manager of the municipality of leinach, emphasizes that on friday the local fire chief and the fire department leadership in the western district had told them that no additional notification of the population would be ordered.
Complaints: drinking water hotline only available intermittently
"Contaminated drinking water is anything but harmless! Just because it's friday and the authorities close at noon, that can't mean that dangerous situations simply aren't communicated afterwards.", a reader was surprised. In fact, according to the health department, the hotline was only staffed from 6 to 8 p.M. On friday and from 10 a.M. To noon on saturday. Since monday, it has been accessible throughout.
The contamination of the water was discovered on friday morning in the drinking water laboratory of fernwasserversorgung franken (F), which has taken over the technical operation for the zweckverband fernwasserversorgung mittelmain (M).
Since with enterokokken a report obligation exists, the health offices in the district wurzburg and main spessart were informed. "All responsible persons sat down immediately at a table", says eva von vietinghoff-scheel, the deputy director of works of the special purpose association. "The first press release went out to the local press, the radio and the affected communities while the meeting with the health authorities and the technical management of the f was still in progress."
In order to better inform the population in the coming days, the wurzburg district office is now using the "katwarn" warning app. It is actually intended as a supplementary warning instrument for disaster control, but can also be used to spread information.
By angelika kleinhenz, melanie jager and ernst lauterbach