Utah town of Panguitch's water supply tainted with E. coli

Published on September 12, 2017 at 02:35PM

PANGUITCH, Utah (AP) — About two months after a Utah wildfire stopped burning, testing has shown unacceptable levels of E. coli bacteria in most of the water that filters through the taps of the rural town of Panguitch.

Town manager Lori Talbot says suspects the cause of the contaminated water supply is the fire because “we didn’t have E. coli before the fire burned over the watershed.”

An emergency assessment of the burned area says collection boxes the town uses to gather water from its springs are also at serious risk of being clogged with debris. Rains have already washed carcasses into the spring area.

The Legislature’s Commission on Federalism is demanding answers from U.S. Service Chief Tom Tidwell and other top land-management officials.