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By Citizen Reporter


Hammanskraal outbreak latest: Zero cholera detected in piped water supply

The City of Tshwane tested samples from multiple sites, with results showing no microbiological contaminants pointing to cholera.

No cholera was found in samples taken from several sources around Temba and Hammanskraal, according to the City of Tshwane.

“The City of Tshwane has received the results from sampling testing taken from multiple sites around Temba and Hammanskraal pertaining to tracing the cholera outbreak.”

On Monday afternoon, the death toll stood at 15, while more than a 100 people had sought medical assistance for the disease.

It advised residents to practise good hygiene and handwashing, as well as to regularly wash the containers they use to draw water from the water tankers with Jik detergent, and to boil water drawn from other sources before drinking it.

Communities are also urged not to conduct religious activities, including baptism in the rivers or streams.

ALSO READ: Hammanskraal should be declared a disaster area

Hammanskraal cholera outbreak: Widespread testing of water sources

Samples were taken from multiple reservoirs, fire hydrants, primary schools, clinics and other locations that receive water from the Temba Water Treatment Plant.

Several points where water tankers draw their supply were also part of the testing.

“All of these tests have conclusively indicated that there are no microbiological contaminants that point to E. Coli or Faecal Coliforms that can be linked to the cholera outbreak,” the city said in a statement.

ALSO READ: Mahlobo ‘blames’ City of Tshwane as cholera outbreak death toll rises to 15

What is cholera?

  • Cholera is a bacterial disease usually spread through contaminated water.
  • Symptoms include severe diarrhoea and dehydration.
  • If left untreated, it can be fatal in a matter of hours, even in previously healthy people.

City widens testing scope

With the source of the contamination as yet uncertain, the city has widened the scope of its testing.

Representatives have been interviewing patients to try and trace the source of the contamination.

“We will continue to keep the affected residents updated on further test results as and when they become available,” the statement read.

Tshwane urged residents who suspect they have symptoms to get to the nearest clinic or hospital as soon as possible.

“Do not wait until you feel worse.”

ALSO READ: Blame game erupts amid Hammanskraal cholera outbreak

Food safety, water delivery campaigns intensified

In the meantime, the City said it would intensify food safety campaigns and increase delivery of potable water in tankers to five times a week, excluding Thursday and Sundays until the end of May.

Water supplied in Hammanskraal should not be used to drink or prepare food as it is not potable.

“CoT would like to reiterate its appeal to the communities in Hammanskraal and surrounding areas to refrain from using water from taps for drinking purposes.

“Outbreak Response Teams (ORT) are on the ground conducting surveillance monitoring, sampling and field investigations.”

The City said that it is awaiting test results from the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) to determine the actual source of contamination.

Edited by Cornelia le Roux. 

This article originally appeared in Pretoria Rekord and was republished with permission. Read the original article here.

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