Due to possible contamination of the Neosho River after a fertilizer plant fire Wednesday (Jan. 1), the city of Humboldt, Kansas, shut the intake to its water treatment plant.
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment issued a water conservation notice for Humboldt and surrounding Allen County the day after the closing.
"Residents are encouraged to conserve water where possible," the notice states. "The amount of water currently in storage tanks is limited and water supplies are starting to decline."
Runoff from water used to extinguish the Mid-West Fertilizer plant fire in Iola on New Years' Day reached the Neosho River. Concern about elevated levels of herbicide and pesticide entering the river prompted decisions in Humboldt and Chanute to shut down river intakes to their public water supply treatment plants.
Officials rescinded the water conservation notice Monday, when finished water from Humboldt and Chanute tested as compliant with federal standards.
Drinking water samples showed minor amounts of atrazine which were well below the maximum contaminant level of 3 ug/1 for drinking water. All other contaminates were at non-detectable levels in the drinking water.
The Facebook page for Mid-West states that plant's office took most of the damage.
"Our fertilizer building remained untouched," according to the Facebook post. "We have many people to thank for their tremendous efforts."
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