Water from Matrimony Spring, located on Hwy 128 just east of the intersection with Hwy 191 near Moab, Utah, has recently and repeatedly violated drinking water standards. Although this is not an emergency, you have a right to know what happened, what you should do, and what is being done to address this unique situation.Matrimony Spring water has been routinely monitored for the presence of drinking water contaminants. Repeated and periodic testing over the past year has shown the presence of coliform bacteria in water from the Spring. In response, Matrimony Spring was closed to public use in early 2009. Coliforms are bacteria which are naturally present in the environment and are used as an indicator that other, potentially-harmful, bacteria may be present. Coliforms were found in more samples than allowed and this was a warning of potential problems.
- People with compromised immune systems, infants, and some elderly may be at increased risk if they consume Matrimony Spring water. Others may also be subject to heightened risk of water borne illness if they consume Matrimony Spring water. People should seek advice about drinking water from their health care providers. General guidelines on ways to lessen the risk of infection by microbes are available from EPA’s Safe Drinking Water Hotline at (800) 426-4791.
- Use alternate local sources of water, including the public water tap located across Hwy 128 at the Lions Park.
Usually, coliforms are a sign that there could be a problem with the water source or distribution improvements (e.g., pipe and box). Whenever coliform bacteria is detected in any sample, follow-up testing is conducted to determine if other bacteria of greater concern, such as fecal coliform or E. coli, are present. These other bacteria have not been identified in subsequent testing. If they had been, public notification would have been immediate. The most recent testing to-date continues to identify coliforms in the Matrimony Spring water.
After analysis of a host of related issues and continued water testing, the Grand County Council determined in a regular public meeting held July 21, 2009 that Matrimony Spring is to be returned to its natural state. The improvements at the Spring site, including the box and pipe, were ordered removed and, accordingly, Matrimony Spring was terminated as a designated “community water system.” Upon completion of these tasks, Grand County will have terminated all obligation related to the Spring. Authorities at the State of Utah, Division of Drinking water have been notified of these developments.For more information, please contact:
Council Assistant - Grand County Council
125 East Center Street
Moab, UT 84532
Please share this information with all the other people who drink this water, especially those who may not have received this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses). You can do this by posting this notice in a public place or distributing copies by hand or mail.
Date distributed: August 13, 2009