Pink water flowing through taps had people in a tizzygreenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
Thursday February 24, 2000 Share This Story With A Friend
Pink water flowing through taps had people in a tizzy
PORTAGE LA PRAIRIE, Man. (CP) - When pink water came out of the tap in this western Manitoba town Wednesday, people were at first leery. "It was pink like you cut a grapefruit right in half," said Bill Protopapas, a restaurant owner.
He had to melt ice cubes to make his morning coffee because officials told residents via the radio not to drink the water.
By 11 a.m., the Manitoba government told the city its water was OK to drink and do laundry with, but not to put in fish tanks.
The problem was caused by an excessive amount of potassium permanganate mistakenly released into the city's water supply when a piece of equipment broke at the treatment plant, said city official Kelly Braden.
Protopapas didn't try making coffee for customers until the afternoon when the water had cleared somewhat.
Lunch customers were quick to adjust, he said.
"Our Coca-Cola sales today over the lunch hour were way out of whack," Protopapas said.
McCain Foods Ltd., the largest consumer of water in Portage, 70 kilometres west of Winnipeg, was in a maintenance shutdown and wasn't affected.
"We are down for a few days, it's very fortunate for us," said McCain plant manager Germain Pinette.
If the plant had been operating, it would have been forced to shut down and stock would have been ruined, he said.
All tap water should be clear within a day or two, Braden said.
-- Homer Beanfang (Bats@inbellfry.com), February 24, 2000
OK for people, but not for fish? No "tanks."
-- Lurkess (Lurkess@Lurking.XNet), February 24, 2000.
It's probably just some extra (pink) champagne left over from New Years.
-- ItsReally (HardToGetSeriousAbout@This.com), February 24, 2000.
I wouldn't want to drink that stuff. Pot. permanganate is used to sterilize aquariums and ponds. It is toxic to humans. From U. Cal. at San Diego:HEALTH EFFECTS AND FIRST AID
INHALATION: POTASSIUM PERMANGANATE: CORROSIVE.
ACUTE EXPOSURE- May cause severe irritation of the respiratory tract, labored breathing, choking, stridor, persistent, spasmodic cough, pain in the nose, mouth and throat, and burns of the mucous membranes. If sufficient quantities are inhaled, pulmonary edema may develop, often with a latent period of 5-72 hours. The symptoms may include tightness in the chest, frothy sputum, cyanosis, and dizziness. Physical findings may include weak, rapid pulse, hypotension, moist rales and hemoconcentration. Recovery may be prolonged and relapses are possible. In severe exposures, death due to anoxia may occur within a few hours after onset of pulmonary edema or following a relapse.
CHRONIC EXPOSURE- Depending on the concentration and duration of exposure, repeated or prolonged exposure to acidic substances may cause erosion of the teeth and inflammatory and ulcerative changes in the mouth. Bronchial and gastrointestinal disturbances are also possible.
FIRST AID- Remove from exposure area to fresh air immediately. Perform artificial respiration if necessary. Maintain airway, blood pressure and respiration. Keep warm and at rest. Treat symptomatically and supportively. Get medical attention immediately. Qualified medical personnel should consider administering oxygen.
SKIN CONTACT: POTASSIUM PERMANGANATE: CORROSIVE.
ACUTE EXPOSURE- Dilute aqueous solutions may be mildly irritating. Direct contact with the solid may cause severe burns with redness and pain.
CHRONIC EXPOSURE- Effects depend on the concentration and duration of exposure. Repeated or prolonged contact with corrosive substances may result in dermatitis or effects similar to acute exposure.
FIRST AID- Remove contaminated clothing and shoes immediately. Wash with soap or mild detergent and large amounts of water until no evidence of chemical remains (at least 15-20 minutes). If burns occur, proceed with the following: Cover affected area securely with sterile, dry, loose-fitting dressing. Treat symptomatically and supportively. Get medical attention immediately.
EYE CONTACT: POTASSIUM PERMANGANATE: CORROSIVE.
ACUTE EXPOSURE- Dilute aqueous solutions may be only mildly irritating, however, direct contact with the solid may cause burns with redness, pain, lacrimation and blurred vision. Contact with strong solutions or crystals may cause a hardened, eroded lesion accompanied by swelling of the lids and conjunctivae and subconjunctival hemorrhage.
CHRONIC EXPOSURE- Effects depend on the concentration and duration of exposure. Repeated or prolonged exposure to corrosive substances may cause conjunctivitis or effects as in acute exposure. Turbidity and brown discoloration of the cornea is possible with prolonged contact.
FIRST AID- Wash eyes immediately with large amounts of water, occasionally lifting upper and lower lids, until no evidence of chemical remains (at least 15-20 minutes). Continue irrigating with normal saline until the pH has returned to normal (30-60 minutes). Cover with sterile bandages. Get medical attention immediately.
INGESTION: POTASSIUM PERMANGANATE: CORROSIVE.
ACUTE EXPOSURE- May cause inflammation, and corrosion of the mouth, pharynx and larynx. Discoloration from a purple-brown to coal black may occur. A slight metallic luster may also be apparent. Additional effects may include nausea, vomiting, difficulty speaking or swallowing, black stool, epigastric pain, and tympanic distention of the abdomen. Shock resulting in death may also occur. If death is not immediate, jaundice and oliguria or anuria may appear.
CHRONIC EXPOSURE- Depending on the concentration, repeated ingestion of acidic substances may result in inflammatory and ulcerative changes in the mucous membranes of the mouth and other effects as in acute ingestion.
FIRST AID- Do not use gastric lavage or emesis. Dilute the acid immediately by drinking large quantities of water or milk. If vomiting persists, administer fluids repeatedly. Ingested acid must be diluted approximately 100 times to render it harmless to tissues. If symptoms are severe and perforation of the stomach or esophagus is suspected, give nothing by mouth until endoscopic examination has been done. (Dreisbach, Handbook of Poisoning, 11th Edition) get medical attention immediately. Treatment should be administered by qualified medical personnel.
ANTIDOTE: No specific antidote. Treat symptomatically and supportively.
-- Tom Carey (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 24, 2000.
Just read an interesting report about the filtering capacity of coffee. Seems that coffee grounds are negatively charged, pollutants and heavy metals have a positive charge. When contaminated water is poured through ground coffee 70-80% of the pollutants are neutralized. That strong brew keeps on "filtering" once swallowed. It's good for you. (posted at U of Fla)
-- NH (email@example.com), February 24, 2000.
Thank the Lord I drink stronge coffee!
-- ET (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 24, 2000.