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October 6, 2017

Free Water Testing and Tetanus Shots for Flood Victims Ends on Oct. 30

OSWEGO COUNTY - The Oswego County Health Department announced that it will wrap up its free water sampling program and free Tdap vaccinations at the end of the month.

"Monday, October 30 will be the last day for free water sample pick-up and testing," said Natalie Roy, principal public health sanitarian. "As people recover from the lakeshore flooding earlier this year, we've found that the need for sampling is slowing down."

The department began providing free Coliform and E. coli bacteria testing for residents who were affected by Lake Ontario flooding in May. Since then, staff have received dozens of samples for testing at the main office in Oswego or during their weekly pick-up in the town of Sandy Creek.

Due to the Columbus Day holiday on Monday, October 9, there will be no pick-up in Sandy Creek. Residents who wish to have their water tested that week can bring their sample to the Oswego County Health Department's Environmental Division, 70 Bunner Street, Oswego. Samples are accepted between 8:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, and must be submitted for testing on the same day that they are taken. No written results will be provided.

On Mondays, October 16, 23, and 30, residents affected by the flooding can bring their water samples to the Sandy Creek Town Clerk's Office, 1992 Harwood Drive, between 9 and 11 a.m. Again, samples must be dropped off on the same day that they are collected.

The county health department also began dispensing free Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis) shots to residents who were affected by the high-water levels in May.

"We're also seeing a slow-down in the need for these vaccinations," said Jodi Martin, supervising public health nurse with the Oswego County Health Department. "The shots were a preventive measure to help people avoid contracting tetanus, an infectious disease that can develop by having contaminated soil or water enter broken areas of skin, such as cuts or abrasions."

For more information about the testing process or to request a bacteria sampling kit, call the Environmental Health Division weekdays at 315-349-3557 or e-mail healthdept@oswegocounty.com. For more information about preventative health services and clinics, call 315-349-3547 weekdays.

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