Park says Crater Lake water safe but Oregon issues health warning
July 31, 1975
(UPI) – The Oregon Slate Health Division has issued a warning about drinking water here hours after park officials announced the water supply was again safe and Crater Lake National Park, closed since July 11 because of a contaminated supply, would reopen Friday.
“The authority to reopen Crater Lake Park rests entirely with the National Park Service and the federal government,” said Division Administrator Bob Oliver. “However, the State Health Division is concerned about ‘public use of Munson Springs water for drinking purposes even though it is to be treated by a filtration system.”
Park Superintendent Richard Sims, in announcing the reopening Wednesday, had said the decision was made after a meeting involving representatives of the Park Service, U.S. Public Health Service, Oregon Health Division and Environmental Protection Agency in which it was agreed the drinking water supply was safe.
Sims said extensive laboratory tests over the past several days indicate the drinking water is safe at all outlets in the system. The entire system fed by the contaminated Munson Springs has been decontaminated, he said.
Oliver said the Division has assurances from the Park Service that there will be daily monitoring of the spring’s water, plus weekly laboratory tests, until another source of supply can be piped to the park headquarters and rim area. He estimated it will lake 18 months to two years to pipe water from Annie Springs, more than three miles from the rim area.
Sims, in announcing the reopening, said Crater Lake Lodge and one campground will remain closed, because of limited water supplies. He said weekend visitors will be asked to conserve water as much as possible.
Three mobile Army water treatment plants remain in operation and a semi-permanent unit purchased by the Park Service is being installed. Sims said until the new unit is ready to use, water, supplies in the park will be limited.