Squaw Valley, California has issued a statement in response to the detection of E. coli and coliform bacteria in the upper mountain of Squaw Valley. Since the November 8 reporting, the water has undergone consistent treatment. E. coli levels have disappeared and low levels of coliform are still present in three out of four wells that serve the upper mountain. The Director of Placer County Environmental Health, Wesley Nicks, offered his statement to the Sierra Sun.
- coli bacterium is commonly found in human and animal intestines and does not cause harm. However, there are strains that may cause severe food poisoning. Older people and children are more susceptible to food poisoning. The feces of humans and animals is generally a source of coliform.
Until the issue is resolved, upper mountain restaurants remain closed and it is not advisable for anyone to drink the water. The famed ski resort continues to allow top-to-bottom skiing since there are no reports of health issues. Residents and resort visitors can rest assured the situation is well under control. Squaw Valley took measures to consult with water safety experts including Placer County Environmental Health, and the Squaw Valley Public Service District. Squaw Valley will continue to address safety concerns until all affected waters have returned to normal.
Recent heavy rains affected several Placer County water systems. Squaw Valley installed an upgraded water system over the summer at Gold Coast and High Camp. There is no water contamination beyond this system. Residents and patrons will continue to have complete access to facilities along with bottled water. Resort guests will receive a continual update until all issues have been completely resolved.
In the meantime, customers can continue to enjoy skiing and the resort’s amenities. Squaw Valley Ski Resort, located in Olympic Valley, remains one of the largest areas for skiing in the nation. The Winter Olympics of 1960 was held at this location. Spread over 3,600 acres, skiers can navigate challenging peaks and wide open spaces. It is a beautiful area with manicured highways and beautiful terrain parks. It is a great place to visit or enjoy a holiday of skiing.