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Cape Coral lifts boil water notice

New water samples at Rotary Park come back negative
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Posted at 4:29 AM, Sep 13, 2022

UPDATE: 12:35 p.m. 9/13 — The City of Cape Coral has rescinded a boil water advisory Tuesday afternoon, some 18 hours after first issuing a citywide alert.

"Please be advised that the City has received clearance from the Health Department on 9/13/22 to rescind the City-wide boil water notice," officials wrote. "The City-wide boil water notice was done out of an abundance of caution because Cape Coral follows very strict federal and state laws on monitoring water contaminants. Cape Coral City water is not contaminated, and no further precautions are needed."

Our original reporting continues below:
On Monday night, the City of Cape Coral held an emergency press conference at the Cape Coral Emergency Operations Center after a water boil notice was issued for the entire city.

Officials stressed residents and businesses who received their water from city utilities were affected by the advisory.

It remains in effect until further notice, though officials said that could be as early as noon Tuesday if results come back promptly and return negative results.

City leaders said the detection was found in samples collected Sept 7. in the Southwest area of the city, near Rotary Park. Testing showed the presence of total coliform and E. coli.

Additional tests were run in the surrounding area and as of Monday night, several of those samples have come back negative. At the news conference, city leaders said health department rules required an additional test, the results of which could come in by noon on Tuesday.

Hernandez said he had no information to indicate that there is a problem with the water quality and safety in the city.

"The fact that we’ve expected our testing, it has come back negative, it has led us to believe that this is a highly, it’s looking like it’s a highly isolated event," Hernandez said.

Hernandez says there could be a number of reasons as to how E. coli became present in the area and they can't definitively say if it came from the dog park.

The city says they will continue to investigate and use the process of elimination.

Now, if the water boil advisory were to stay in place beyond Tuesday, the city does advise people not to drink the water.

But, if you are going to drink water Hernandez, says you should boil the water continuously for one minute before ingesting it.

MORE | Printable PDF document highlighting frequently asked questions

"You can still bathe in it; that’s not an issue," Hernandez said. "You can still wash your dishes in it as long as you’re using hot water; you can still wash your clothes as long as you’re using hot water.

"Hot water will kill any bacteria that’s present in the water," he stressed.

While the city has no plans to distribute water to residents at this time, city school districts, nursing homes, and hospitals are all equipped to provide bottled water to those in their care.