City of Salem extending drinking water advisory for at least two more weeks

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The drinking water advisory for the Salem area will remain in place for at least two more weeks, officials announced Sunday.

The City of Salem said that test results received Sunday morning from water samples taken on Friday indicated the presence of cyanotoxins in the water system are below the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s advisory levels for vulnerable populations.

The city said the test results provide two consecutive days of results below EPA guidelines, but as a precautionary measure, it is extending the water advisory for at least two more weeks.

“Because we have an active algal bloom in our water source, we’ve decided to be proactive by keeping the drinking water advisory in place – regardless of the results of our sampling – for the next two weeks, while we continue to test and refine new treatment methods,” said Salem City Manager Steve Powers. “We’ve heard concerns about the two-day lag between our sampling and receiving results of tests from our lab. By keeping the drinking water advisory in place, we hope to reduce confusion and give our residents and our water customers the opportunity to take the precautions they feel necessary for their families and their customers.”

The advisory is for children under the age of 6 years old, people with compromised immune systems, people receiving dialysis treatment, people with pre-existing liver conditions, the elderly, pets, pregnant women or nursing mothers or other sensitive populations.

The city said the water remains safe to drink for the vast majority of Salem residents.

Drinking water filling stations are available at the following locations: AMF Firebird Lanes, 4303 Center St. NE, Salem Bush's Pasture Park, Mission St. entrance, 600 Mission St. SE, Salem Chemeketa Community College, Brown Parking Lot, 4000 Lancaster Dr. NE, Salem City of Keizer Civic Center, 4969 Rickman Rd NE, Keizer East Salem Suburban Water District, 3805 La Branch St. SE, Salem (8 a.m. to 8 p.m.) Former Cheverolet Dealership, 5325 Denver St., Turner Geer Park, 3071 State St., Salem Salvation Army Kroc Center, 1865 Bill Frey Dr, Salem Wallace Marine Park, 200 Glen Creek Rd. NW, Salem Woodmansee Park, 4629 Sunnyside Rd. SE, Salem Woodburn Memorial Transit Center, 2900 Tom Tennant Way, Woodburn (9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, beginning at 7 am Monday)People who need help can contact City of Salem Public Works at 503-588-6311.

The most recent water advisory was issued on Wednesday.

Previously, the city issued an advisory on May 29 after low levels of cylindrospermopsin and microcystin were found in treated drinking water. That advisory was lifted on June 2.

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