E. Coli Found In Water Near Broken Pipe In Santa Cruz County

By Al Macias
Published: Thursday, July 27, 2017 - 5:46pm
Updated: Friday, July 28, 2017 - 3:15pm

Santa Cruz County health officials have found excessive E. coli levels in water near a breach in an international pipeline that carries untreated sewage from Mexico into Arizona.

Officials say testing from the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality found E. coli in water below and above the broken part of the international pipeline. The pipe transports wastewater from both sides of the border to the Nogales International Wastewater Treatment Plan.

County authorities discovered the break in the pipe on Tuesday following heavy rains that may have put too much pressure on it.

Gov. Doug Ducey has declared a state of emergency and has allocated $200,000 in general fund money. The city of Nogales, which also declared a state of emergency, says the estimated cost of repairs is $5 million.

The breach was discovered in a sparsely populated area north of Rio Rico, Arizona.