Traces of E. coli, coliform bacteria found in Park Forest drinking water prompting boil order

Park Forest residents are being advised to boil their tap water before use after routine tests found traces of E.coli and coliform bacteria in the village’s drinking water.

A routine water test Saturday initially found the presence of both types of bacteria in the village’s water supply, but a follow-up test found only “unsatisfactory” levels of coliform bacteria, the village’s Public Works Department.

Coliform bacteria live in soil and water, as well as the gut of humans and animals, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The bacteria are mostly harmless, but can indicate a problem if found in treated water.

A mandatory boil order went into effect about 3:15 p.m. Saturday and is expected to last until Monday, officials said. Residents should use bottled water or boil tap water for five minutes before using.

Officials are conducting more test to determine if it was an isolated issue, or if other sites also have contaminated water, the department said. Officials will take 31 samples from around the community over the next two days to make further determinations.

Anyone with questions should can call Park Forest’s Public Works Department at 708-748-4701.