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Water Conservation and Cooling Tower News

Conservation

The Alliance for Water Efficiency recently reported that 30 years of water conservation has reduced the amount of water usage by almost 60 gallons per resident in Tucson, Arizona. The water efficiency project followed conservation savings in 2 Arizona cities, Tucson and Gilbert. In the last 20 years, Gilbert was reported to have reduced water usage by 30% from conservation alone. The cost for Gilbert’s water and wastewater system hookup is 45 percent lower today, due to conservation savings and reduced need for infrastructure improvements over the period. Cities across the nation and California in particular, which has had great success and a 25% reduction in use recently, are looking to find similar ways to reduce use and costs.

Water quality is becoming an issue in many rural areas in California and Tucson also. Cleanup of contamination of water in the area around Tucson Airport is currently ongoing. A recent report has revealed that the arsenic levels in the drinking water at some schools in the San Joaquin Valley in Califrnia are in question. The Rural Community Assistance Corporation reported that some public water systems in the San Joaquin Valley area have levels that exceed maximum federal safety levels by as much as 300%. An open house session was held in July with Tucson Water officials and the Environmental Protection Agency to discuss water quality issues.

Legionnaires‘ Disease

73 cases, constituting a 143% increase over the last 2 years, of Legionnaires’ disease has been reportedly found in Metro Detroit during June and July of this year. Michigan health officials have not yet identified a common source of the infection. The CDC has reported that a genetic has found link between the nearby Flint Michigan water system and the infections of Flynt residents Back in 2014-2015, which killed 12 people.

Eight cases of infections from the legionellosis bacteria were detected in the Three Rivers region of Quebec last month. The source of the bacteria has still not been located. Public water fountains have been temporarily closed while the source is looked for. All main city water systems have been checked and found to be free of contamination. Local fears are high as many remember 14 deaths and more than 180 infections during a massive outbreak in Quebec City five years ago.

2 Cases Of Legionnaires’ Disease were reported at a Building in Queens, NY in the last few days. The city instituted mandatory cooling tower inspections 2 years ago but other sources are suspected, as the building does not have a cooling tower. One tenant remains hospitalized but is listed as recovering, while the other was discharged.

A spa at a Gold’s Gym in Kennewick, Wa., was the suspected source of two recent infections and currently the spa is closed for inspection.

Nine cases have been confirmed in the last outbreak between May 15 and June 26 at The Guesthouse Hotel at Graceland and there has now been a lawsuit filed against Elvis Presley Enterprises alleging “through the normal use of The Guest House at Graceland’s water system” that they were exposed to the legionellosis bacteria. The plaintiff spent over a week in intensive care. “Moving forward, the establishment will implement their preventive water maintenance plan monthly instead of quarterly for the next six months as well as continue routine sampling on the aquatics facilities”, according to Shelby County Health Department public information officer Elizabeth Hart. As of July 19, the Shelby County Health Department authorized The Guest House at Graceland to reopen the aquatics facilities.

CDC Corrects Paper on Legionnaire’s Disease – After a critical examination of a report by Pittsburgh Post-Gazette the CDC has revised its report about the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System outbreaks that sickened 22 veterans, killing six, in 2012 and 2013. The conclusions of a 2013 report from the VA’s Inspector General found that “the outbreak was due to poor management generally and poor maintenance of the copper-silver system specifically, not that the copper-silver system itself had failed.”

Cooling TowersGuardian Water Treatment of the UK has recently announced a Legionella Awareness Course (http://www.gwtltd.com/water-treatment/training/legionella-training-for-cooling-towers/) for cooling tower operators in the UK. Course are listed as: Week 1: Overview of ACoP L8, including HSG274 Part 1 and site specific training on testing and inspection. Week 2: Operation theory, site specific testing and inspection. Week 3: Brief recap of test procedure and final competence sign off.