2014 – Wilcannia (New South Wales) – E.coli

2014 February: Wilcannia-Boil Water Alert
E.coli Bacteria Contamination
Regular monitoring for E. coli bacteria in the Wilcannia water supply system is conducted by Central Darling Shire Council.
E. coli is generally not harmful, but its presence in drinking water is associated with sewerage and animal wastes. The presence of these bacteria indicates that the water may be contaminated with organisms that may cause disease.
Recent monitoring has shown E. coli to be present in the Wilcannia water supply system. As
a precaution you are advised that water for consumption should be brought to a rolling boil. Water should then be allowed to cool and stored in a clean container with a lid and refrigerated.

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