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Thousands warned to continue boiling water

People in Lancashire have been warned they should continue boiling their tap water before use for several days.

Thousands warned to continue boiling water. Credit: PA

Tests at a water treatment plant found traces of the microscopic bug cryptosporidium, which can cause sickness and diarrhoea.

Water firm United Utilities, which first issued the boiling water advice on Thursday, has warned customers that the situation will continue for a number of days.

Thousands having to boil drinking water after a bug is found in supplies

Hundreds of thousands of people in Lancashire are being told to boil their water before drinking after United Utilities found a bug at its treatment works near Preston.

Cryptosporidium can cause sickness and diarrhoea.

Residents in Blackpool, Chorley, Fylde, Preston, South Ribble and Wyre are affected.

United Utilities says the order could be in place into next week.

Daniel Hewitt reports:

Tony spoke to Gary Dixon from United Utilites, and began by asking him how the bug got into the water in the first place?

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Public Health England issue advice for Lancashire water customers hit by bug

“We would remind people in the affected areas to follow the advice from United Utilities 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.

“There is no specific treatment for cryptosporidiosis.

"In most cases the symptoms of abdominal pain and diarrhoea settle in a few days.

"However, in a few cases cryptosporidiosis can be unpleasant with diarrhoea lasting for several weeks It is important to drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration.”

– Kate Brierley, Public Health England
  • Anybody who feels unwell or experiences the symptoms of D&V should contact NHS 111 or see their GP.

Lancashire water bug: Postcode search to see if you're affected

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Boil drinking water, Lancashire residents warned

United Utilities is advising customers in Blackpool, Chorley, Fylde, Preston, South Ribble and Wyre to to boil their water for all drinking, food preparation and brushing teeth as a precaution until further notice.

The company say people can continue to use tap water without boiling for general purposes such as bathing, flushing toilets or washing clothes.

Routine tests at Franklaw water treatment works detected traces of cryptosporidium which can cause gastrointestinal illness.

Martin Padley, Chief Scientific Officer at United Utilities, said: “The advice is being given purely as a precautionary measure as we carry out additional tests today.

To find out if your postcode is affected, click here

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