As flood recovery efforts continue throughout the state, several concerns about the condition of floodwaters are emerging. Oil, debris, and intestinal bacteria are just a few of the contaminants that have spilled into Colorado’s waterways, complicating clean-up efforts and posing a risk for public safety.
As if Colorado hasn’t experienced enough destruction in the past week, officials are now facing a 5,250-gallon crude oil spill in the South Platte River. Furthermore, National Geographic reports many of the state’s wells are also at risk, and 1,900 wells have had to be closed off to prevent leakages.
Debris removal is another huge issue confronting Coloradans. The Denver Post reported this week that state regulators were working on waivers for safety and environmental standards at landfills in order to handle the toxic refuse at city drop-off sites and debris still piled in creeks and rivers.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Federal Emergency Management Agency are urging people to stay out of floodwaters to avoid infectious organisms. Hopefully, CU-Boulder students will think twice before pulling out their inner tubes after reading this Boulder Weekly article.