Health risk high in flooded areas
Michael Franklin, CTV Calgary
Published Monday, June 24, 2013 12:26PM MDT
Last Updated Monday, June 24, 2013 7:14PM MDT
The Alberta Health Services is warning residents to be careful as they head back to their homes affected by the flooding but say that drinking water remains safe despite the smell.
One of the main concerns for health officials is the presence of mould, which can develop in wet walls and cause serious issues for people’s respiratory systems.
The AHS says that wet walls will need to be torn out, because washing them won’t do it.
Soap and water won’t cut it for walls above the flood line either. They’ll need to be cleaned with detergent and bleach to prevent the spread of mould.
Experts also advise homeowners to disinfect the dry areas of their homes in case any spores managed the make their way there.
As for any food salvaged from the flood, officials say that the only items that can be saved would be canned food, which should be washed off well before using them.
Health officials also say that the city’s drinking water is safe to use, enough though it may smell and taste a little strange.
There are boil water advisories in place in several communities outside of Calgary which include Canmore, Exshaw, Harvie Heights, Kananaskis Country, and High River.
That means that residents should boil anything they’re using to drink, brush your teeth, or use in food.
Water use for showering and bathing is safe, but all those communities including Calgary and others neighbouring the city are being asked to limit their water consumption. Sprinklers should be shut off; residents should limit themselves to short showers, and limit toilet flushing.
Mayor Naheed Nenshi says that minimizing water use helps the system as a whole. “Drinking water plants are still dealing with heavy slit,” he said in a conference on Monday.
He also asks residents to refrain from watering their lawns or washing their cars unless it is absolutely necessary to do so.
As for hospitals in Calgary, everything is open except for the Sheldon Chumir Centre and Holy Cross Centre, which are both the downtown area.