Sierra City water supplier cited for contamination |

Sierra City water supplier cited for contamination

A state health agency cited a Sierra City private water source Friday after finding fecal coliform contamination.

The California Department of Health Services issued a citation requiring improvements to a spring and chlorination of water for Sierra County’s Central Town Water System, said Mike McNamara, district engineer with the department.

The citation requires improvements to the spring-fed, private water system by the end of February.

Tests of the system last month found fecal coliform contamination from human or animal waste, a violation of state water standards.

McNamara said the spring-fed water system serves 45 residents and three businesses – the Old Sierra City Hotel, the Sierra Country Store and Sarracco’s Saloon.

Bob Morales, owner of the Old Sierra City Hotel, said the three businesses have decided to hook up to another water supply, the Sierra City Water Works, at a cost of about $35,000.

“When we make that move it will address the biggest concerns of the state regarding public exposure,” said Morales, who is president of the Central Town Water System.

If the businesses didn’t hook up with the other, they would have been shut down, Morales said.

Morales said the hotel’s restaurant would be closed this past weekend, but is expected to reopen this weekend, when the water connection is complete. The bar remained open.

Other users of the private system will be under a boil-water order.

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