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Possible contamination of water supply at Water World leads to health warning

FEDERAL HEIGHTS, Colo. -- The Tri-County Health Department said untreated water at Water World might have affected drinking fountains and been used to make ice, drinks and food at concession stands on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

The water contamination might have happened because of a power outage and subsequent repair of a broken valve that "likely allowed water from an irrigation pond to flow into the domestic water supply," the health department said Wednesday night.

The contamination also might have affected water in some of the swimming pools.

Water World, the city of Federal Heights, the Tri-County Health Department and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment are investigating the situation.

“The problem has been corrected, so any possible exposure was limited to those three days. We are notifying the public out of an abundance of caution so that guests can be aware of any symptoms from ingesting untreated water,” Tri-County executive director John Douglas Jr. said.

“These symptoms may include vomiting, diarrhea and fever. Symptoms can appear as soon as 12 hours after exposure and as long as 45 days after exposure.”

Anyone experiencing these symptoms who visited Water World on the days in question should call the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment at 303-692-2700, then contact their health care provider.

Their doctor can check for pathogens sometimes found in untreated water, including norovirus, giardia, E. coli, cryptosporidium and hepatitis A, and then recommend appropriate treatment.

No illnesses were reported as of Wednesday night.

Water World will be closed Thursday, postponing the grand opening for the Glacier Run Ride.

"The postponement is due to the possibility that non-potable water may have been introduced to our domestic water supply this week," Water World said in a statement. "As a proactive safety measure, we will not open the park [Thursday] so we can continue to sanitize all of our concession areas.

"We are working with the state and local oversight agencies who we contacted, and are very pleased with their help in resolving the issue."

The park expects to reopen on Friday.

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