2008 October – Ferntree Gully – Alma Avenue (Victoria) – E.coli

Ferntree Gully  – (Victoria) – E.coli

The first E.coli detection was from a non-routine sample taken from a hydrant in a development area in Alma Avenue, Ferntree Gully on 22 October 2008 (four E.coli organisms per 100mL). The location of this sample point falls within the Ferntree Gully locality, which is supplied from Silvan Reservoir. All system checks were clear and a re-sample from the original location and another sample tap nearby, taken on the following day, were clear of E.coli. https://southeastwater.com.au/SiteCollectionDocuments/LearnAboutWater/WaterQuality/WaterQualityReport200809.pdf

Escherichia coli should not be detected in any 100 mL sample of drinking water. If detected
in drinking water, immediate action should be taken including investigation of potential
sources of faecal contamination.

“Coliforms are Gram-negative, non-spore-forming, rod-shaped bacteria that are capable of aerobic and facultative anaerobic growth in the presence of bile salts or other surface active agents with similar growth-inhibiting properties. They are found in large numbers in the faeces of humans and other warm-blooded animals, but many species also occur in the environment.

Thermotolerant coliforms are a sub-group of coliforms that are able to grow at 44.5 ± 0.2°C. E. coli is the most common thermotolerant coliform present in faeces and is regarded as the most specific indicator of recent faecal contamination because generally it is not capable of growth in the environment. In contrast, some other thermotolerant coliforms (including strains of Klebsiella, Citrobacter and Enterobacter) are able to grow in the environment and their presence is not necessarily related to faecal contamination. While tests for thermotolerant coliforms can be simpler than for E. coli, E. coli is considered a superior indicator for detecting faecal contamination…” ADWG 2011