News Release

April 21, 2005


Hunting Bayou Advisory

Houston public health officials have issued a health advisory on Hunting Bayou from McCarty Road to the Houston Ship Channel until further notice. High levels of caustic sodium hydroxide have been identified in the bayou. The chemical entered the bayou as runoff from an industrial fire earlier in the week.

Residents should not fish, swim, canoe, wade, drink or collect water from Hunting Bayou from McCarty Road to the Houston Ship Channel. Family pets and livestock should be contained to avoid contact with the waterway. The fish in the bayou should not be eaten. Contact with the contaminated water can result in skin and eye irritation. Sodium hydroxide is a common component of drain cleaner.

The City of Houston, at the request of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Texas Environmental Quality Commission and the federal Environmental Protection Agency, will flush the waterway with water to dissipate the affected segment of the bayou. No flooding is anticipated as a result of the additional water. The recreational advisory on the bayou will be lifted when the aquatic system returns to normal.

The City of Houston water supply is not affected by the contamination in the bayou.

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