The spill from the City of Reedley Wastewater Treatment Plant involved approximately 63,000 gallons of sewage and occurred at approximately 8 p.m. on Monday, July 30, 2012. At this time, Tulare County Public Health has been informed that a portion of the untreated sewage flowed directly into the Kings River. As a result, known recreational areas have been posted with health and safety warnings, alerting the public to avoid all contact with the water until sample results indicate the water is safe for recreational use. At this time, no humans or animals should have contact with the contaminated water, and the water should not be used for crop irrigation or similar use.
Water samples were taken today, July 31, 2012, and when the test results indicate the water is safe, the area will be reopened for public use.
Tulare County Public Health urges citizens to make no contact with the Kings River at this time, and asks that all citizens recognize the posted warning signs. Absolutely no contact with the water should take place, including, but not limited to, water play, consumption of water, irrigation, or fishing. The public should avoid eating fish from this water at this time, as fish from contaminated waters represent an elevated risk of disease if consumed.
Contact with sewage contaminated water increases the risk for certain types of illnesses. At this time, no contact with the contaminated water of the Kings River should take place.