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Public Health Notice: Avoid drinking or cooking with tap water from the French side

The Collective Prevention Services (CPS), a department of the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour, has been informed by the authorities of the Collectivite of St. Martin that there is a precautionary ban in place on drinking and cooking with tap water from the French sides water distribution network.  The tap water can be used for cleaning and showering.

The ban is in place due to an analysis carried out by the Regional Health Agency (ARS) of several districts on St. Martin which showed a high level of bromates within the water distribution system.

Bromates is formed when ozone used to disinfect drinking water reacts with naturally occurring bromide found in source water. Bromate formation in disinfected drinking water is influenced by factors such as bromide ion concentration, pH of the source water, the amount of ozone and the reaction time used to disinfect the water.

CPS advises anybody who experiences symptoms of nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or cramps, to contact their family physician and thereafter to inform CPS about your case.

The situation on the French side of the island does not in no way impact the drinking water distribution supply on the Dutch side of the island.  NV GEBE public utilities company on Saturday issued a statement with respect to the quality and safety of potable water on the Dutch side.

The Collectivite of St. Martin based on information from ARS will provide an update to residents on Monday, June 24.

For more information call CPS at 542-3003, 542-3553, 542-1122 or 542-1222.