Larvae Worm Their Way Into Oklahoma Water Plant

Red worms found in drinking water supply

As drinking water operators, you’re familiar with removing things like contaminants, organics, iron and manganese from the water that enters your plants. But have you ever encountered worms? 

An Oklahoma water plant found just that. Red worms ranging from a half-inch to an inch long were found in the water supply in Colcord, about 80 miles east of Tulsa. 

Residents were asked not to drink the tap water after the worms were found in the filtering system, according to an article by The Associated Press. 

“It is uncommon for red worms to show up in a water system in the state, though it’s fairly common in the southeastern United States,” said a spokesperson for the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality in the article.  

The worms allegedly entered the city’s water treatment plant through the top of the town’s open filter system. The infestation caused school and business closings. 

The water was turned back on Wednesday after the water tower was cleaned, drained and re-cleaned, according to the report. The article also notes that there are no adverse health effects from red worms. 

City Councilman Terry Wood told the newspaper that no worms were found in the tower, and they are investigating the problem.



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