Facebook rumors spur Quincy residents to buy bottled water - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Facebook rumors spur Quincy residents to buy bottled water


A single Facebook post Wednesday was enough to convince many people there was more to the city of Quincy's current bad smelling and tasting water than an algae problem.

City and health officials are trying to set the record straight, saying that despite the smell, Quincy's drinking water is absolutely safe, and there's nothing in it making people sick.

(See "Quincy city officials say water is safe to drink")

Officials say that Quincy's drinking water is tested every day and so far, there have been no red flags, which means there's nothing in the water making people sick.

But one post on Facebook spread like wildfire on Wednesday and convinced many people they needed to stop drinking the city's tap water.

"Dirt, I mean it's bad, it's pretty bad," said John Hensel.

"Anything that smells like that and tastes like that there is bound to be something wrong with it," said Becky Mclean.

As if matters weren't already bad enough with the taste and smell of Quincy's water, leave it to social media to intensify the situation.

Water flew off the shelves Wednesday at the Hy-Vee on Broadway. Kay Dyer was buying bottled water, after she heard about the Facebook rumors from her daughter, who lives in California.

"She sent me a screen shot of it because she was worried about us, and wanted us to know that she had seen this post that a child had become very ill," said Dyer.

Department of Utilities Director David Kent says the rumors on Facebook about the sickness lurking in the water simply are not true, as the department tests the water every day to ensure its safety.

"There's been no contact by any representative, either local or state or by any physician regarding this alleged illness of this child. I'm not saying that the child is not ill, I'm just saying that we've had no contact with the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, any physician or any local hospital or any hospital that this child was supposedly airlifted to," said David Kent.

John Hensel says he isn't worried about the rumors, but is worried about how much longer the situation will drain his pocket book.

"It's a whole lot more expensive paying $4 for a 24-pack of that when I only pay $15 for a month's worth of water," said Hensel.

Officials at Blessing Hospital say they've seen no illnesses or symptoms related to the drinking water.

The Adams County Health Department adds if any medical facility treated someone for a communicable disease, they are required by law to report it, and so far, they've heard nothing.

As for the bad smell of the water, David Kent says that could still linger for another week or so.

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