The breach of a beaver dam in the southernmost region of the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit's catchment area has health officials advising residents of Carling Township who draw their drinking water directly from the Shebeshekong River to take extra precautions.
The Health Unit reports a beaver dam was compromised early Friday morning, discharging a significant amount of pond water into the Shebeshekong River. As a result, those residents may have an increased risk of contracting Giardia Lamblia (aka beaver fever).
"Residents who draw their drinking water direct from the river are advised to boil their water for one full minute prior to using it for drinking, washing fruits and vegetables, and brushing teeth," reads a Health Unit advisory.
Additionally, residents are reminded that not all home water treatment and filter systems remove Giardia. Only filters with the following labels are designed to remove the parasite:
- Reverse osmosis
- Absolute pore size of 1 micron or smaller
- Tested and certified by NSF–Standard 53 for cyst removal
- Tested and certified by NSF–Standard 53 for cyst reduction.
The Health Unit says it encourages residents of Carling Township who develop enteric symptoms such as diarrhea, abdominal cramps, bloating and fatigue to contact their health care provider and seek medical attention.
Residents with questions concerning this issue can call the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit at 1-800-563-2808 or 705-474-1400 ext. 5400 to speak with a Public Health Inspector.