People have been warned to boil their tap water after a deadly bug that causes diarrhoea and vomiting was detected in it.
Bristol Water issued a “boil notice” to people living in the town of Clevedon after samples detected Cryptosporidium, which can cause diarrhoea, vomiting, fever and dehydration.
The company issued the notices to people with the postcode BS21 on Thursday evening, hand delivering through the evening and on Friday to around 7,000 affected properties.
It was also supplying bottled water to vulnerable customers who are unable to boil water in the area and contacting schools directly.
The Clevedon Treatment Works, where the bug was found, was taken off line and the system ‘flushed’ to remove the bug.
Bristol Water said the warning would remain in place over the weekend until tests for the bug proved negative and said it was working with Public Health England and the Drinking Water Inspectorate (DWI) to remove the boil notice as soon as possible.
The company apologised for the disruption but said any potential risk to health was its “number one priority”.
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Thara Raj, Consultant in Health Protection for Public Health England South West said: “We would remind people in the affected areas to follow the advice from Bristol Water and boil their drinking water and allow to cool before use.
“The levels of Cryptosporidium detected in the water supply is low and the advice to boil the water is as a precaution. If people feel unwell or experience symptoms of diarrhoea and vomiting they should contact NHS 111. If your symptoms become severe, you should contact your GP.”