San Jose

San Jose Residents Tested After Tapping Into Questionable Water Supply

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Tenants at an apartment complex in San Jose who tapped into an emergency supply line when their water main broke only to learn days later it might not be safe to drink, are getting some peace of mind Thursday.

After seeing NBC Bay Area’s reports last week, the medical community has responded. Gardner Health Center went over to them to address any medical concerns they might have.

Kashana Ashford's been worried for almost two weeks that she may have gotten sick from the water she used at her apartment.

“I had a couple days where I felt nauseous,” she said. “I had some intestinal upset.” 

The water wasn’t meant for drinking – it came from the fire safety pipe that tenants tapped into to fill up jugs and buckets after the water main to their apartment broke.

Nobody told them the water might not be safe to drink, until we started asking questions and the water company told NBC Bay Area it’s risky.

But the water company refused to test it and that’s when the mobile clinic went over to help.

So today, after seeing our reporting, the mobile clinic from Gardner health came to help.

“I sent them the link of the news article, requesting help and they said no problem nora, we can get it out there,” said Nora Campos, former assembly member. 

To give tenants some peace of mind, the medical staff checked anyone who might be worried about water they may have drunk or cooked with.

“We’re going to see if anybody needs any medical attention,” said Roberta Gundersen of Gardner Health.

Gardner says it might bring the mobile unit back twice a month.

Meanwhile, the water company says it tested the tenants’ tap water after the water main was repaired.

The tests came back negative for coliform bacteria, meaning it's safe to drink.

But they won't test the emergency valve, saying that water was never meant to be used for consumption.

“That’s scary. That’s scary because if there are far reaching problems that can occur because of it, then what?,” said Ashford.

We won’t know the results of today’s medical checkups because of medical privacy rules. But residents tell us they already feel better, knowing someone came out to help.

“I’m hoping that we as a community can continue to push for them  to test that water,” said Campos.

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