UPDATE 9-29-09

Mayor Benny Perry has just advised AM1180 that the water is safe for showering and bathing from Trion City’s water system.  Listen to AM1180 for further updates concerning the water system situation in Trion.  Bear in mind the information about any open wound, skin cut or burn before using water for bathing.

Mayor Benny Perry with Town of Trion is advising that according to the EPD the water in Trion City’s Public Water System is safe for showering or bathing at this point. The EPD is advising that they will adise when the water is safe for other use. It’s local agency advises NOT using City water  for any reason, other than bathing or showering, until all agencies involved have cleared the system.

Public Information Officer Logan Boss With Georgia Public Health has provided the following information.

Public health officials say exposure to flood water poses no increased risk of tetanus or need for immunization for general public, stress wound care and prevention
Rome, GA: Northwest Georgia Public Health officials are emphasizing that floods pose no increased risk of tetanus for the general public not involved in emergency response and stress that wound prevention and careful wound care, not exposure to flood water or contaminated water, should be the primary concern during post-flood recovery and cleanup. “Simple exposure to flood waters does not increase the risk of tetanus” said Dr. Wade Sellers, Northwest Georgia Public Health health director.

“Skin contact with flood water, by itself, does not pose a health threat unless you have an open wound. First aid, even for minor cuts and burns, however, is very important during flood cleanup. When cleaning up after a disaster, be careful of cuts and wounds. To prevent infection, including tetanus, clean all cuts and wounds with soap and clean water, use antibiotic ointment and cover. If a wound swells or drains, seek medical attention immediately.”
According to Sellers, bathing with water from a contaminated water system or source does not pose a health threat unless it contacts an open wound or cut. “Cover any open wound or cut when you shower or bath in a way that prevents water from contacting an open wound or cut,” Sellers said.

Management of flood-associated wounds should include appropriate evaluation of tetanus immunity — and immunization if indicated — as at any other time, according to Sellers. “You should always try to keep your shots up-to-date, as a matter of routine. However, unless you have an open wound or are risking injury while working in contaminated waters, there is no special urgency about getting caught up right now.”

Adults should get a booster shot for diphtheria and tetanus (Td) every ten years, throughout life. If you get a puncture wound, and you are not sure whether you have had a Td booster in the last five years, check with your doctor to see if you should get a booster shot.
You should always assume that disease organisms may be present in flood water, but common sense — and basic hygiene — can help you keep the risk low. The fecal material in sewage contains disease organisms, but it doesn’t pose any risk unless you take it into your mouth.

To keep your risks low, follow these health protection steps.
• Always wash your hands thoroughly after working in a contaminated area.
• Always wear rubber gloves and boots to protect your hands and feet.
• Always take a shower after working in a contaminated area.
• Always assume that anything touched by flood water is contaminated.
For more information about tetanus, contact the Chattooga County Health Department at 706-857-3471 or go to http://www.cdc.gov/v…nus/default.htm