Clovis boy contracts cholera from pond - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Clovis boy contracts cholera from pond

Hillcrest Pond in Clovis / Source: KFDA Hillcrest Pond in Clovis / Source: KFDA
City staff believe stagnant water, paired with germs from ducks and geese, brought the cholera bacteria to the pond / Source: KFDA City staff believe stagnant water, paired with germs from ducks and geese, brought the cholera bacteria to the pond / Source: KFDA
Pumping of the pond began Tuesday. Sterilization of the pond will take a few weeks / Source: KFDA Pumping of the pond began Tuesday. Sterilization of the pond will take a few weeks / Source: KFDA
CLOVIS, N.M. (KFDA) -

Health officials have asked first responders involved in the July 4th rescue of a drowning Clovis boy to seek medical attention after cholera was found in the New Mexico pond.

The 12-year-old boy remains in critical condition in a Lubbock hospital after being pulled from Hillcrest Pond. 

Clovis Interim City Manager Tom Phelps said Lubbock doctors found cholera bacteria in the boy's system when running tests.

Cholera is a bacterial disease usually spread in water that can cause severe diarrhea and dehydration.

The health specialists in Lubbock urged the first responders who helped the boy out of the water to start a strong series of antibiotics.

"None of our personnel fortunately have any indications of any kind of sickness," said Phelps, "But we wanted to make sure they got the antibiotics as a precaution."

Hillcrest Pond is a decent size body of water at Hillcrest Park that's used to irrigate the park.

But it hasn't been in use for the past few months, so the water hasn't been constantly moving like it used to.

"That water sat stagnant, so we think that's what caused, or was the root cause of the cholera," said Phelps. "A lot of ducks, fowl, that kind of thing [are] in the water and we think that they contributed to the cholera."

People in Clovis do not need to worry about catching the disease.

The only way that's possible is if they wade into the contaminated pond - which is not allowed.
   
"We actually have signs up now that tell them they can't fish or swim in the facility," said Phelps.

He said those signs used to be there, but disappeared, and were not posted when the boy who almost drowned, and a handful of other kids last week, tried to swim there.

Water is being pumped out of the pond now and it should be emptied and ready to be sterilized in the next few days.

The area will be heavily chlorinated before fresh water is put back in.

This process will take a few weeks.

Once finished, Hillcrest Pond will be used for irrigation again, which means the water will no longer be stagnant.

Staff believes this will stop the bacteria from coming back.

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