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Medford Water Commission

Medford Water Commission - 541.774.2430
Algal Toxin Monitoring Update

Following the recent health advisory issued in Salem due to the detection of algal toxins (cyanotoxins) in their treated drinking water, Oregon Health Authority (OHA) has released recommendations for water systems with a surface water source.
They encourage systems using a surface water source that have had algae issues in the past to voluntarily test for cyanotoxins, by-products of certain algae species that grow in water, and which can bloom predominantly in warm, stagnant water during the summer months. 
While our primary source, Big Butte Springs, originates from underground and does not have any algae present nor any risk of algal toxins, the remainder of our water comes from the Rogue River, which is not generally stagnant and not as prone to algal blooms as other bodies of water. In addition, MWC uses ozone (in addition to other processes) to treat the Rogue River water. Ozone is one of the most effective treatment methods for destroying algal toxins and creates an effective barrier against algal toxins.
Although the risk is low, MWC will be monitoring throughout the summer season to safeguard public health. No algal toxins have been detected so far, but we will keep our customers informed if any are detected in future tests.

OHA and Environmental Protection Agency have introduced a draft of new regulations for water testing which is expected to be in place by the end of June.

To learn more, call (541) 774-2728, or see the Environmental Protection Agency's Frequently Asked Questions about Harmful Algal Blooms and Cyanotoxins
Additional information about our treatment process can be found here.

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