Refreshing at a popular waterfall on Mount Doi Suthep in Thailand's northern tourist province of Chiang Mai is a health hazard, Dr. Rungsreet Kanjanavanit, a professor of cardiology at Chiang Mai University, warned tourists. According to him, the water in the waterfall only looks clean on the outside – in fact, it is full of E.Coli bacteria, aka E. coli.
“I often see hikers, joggers and cyclists stopping by the waterfall for a refreshment break. I often see people wash their faces. I have even seen people drinking this water. Therefore, I consider it necessary to inform people that recently water samples were taken from various water sources on the mountain and it turned out that this waterfall had the highest levels of E. coli pollution,” said the professor.
According to him, the result is not surprising: on top of the mountain near Wat Phra Doi Suthep there is a large village that serves tens of thousands of temple visitors every day. At the same time, there is no “proper sewerage” in the village, and all wastewater is discharged into natural waterways.
“This problem has been going on for a long time and it is not at all clear which department should solve it. For now, we need to warn tourists not to be deceived by the beautiful view of the waterfall and the external purity of the water. Even after washing with water with a high content of E. coli, you can get sick,” the doctor warned.
Recall, E. coli is a bacterium that can cause symptoms similar to food poisoning; moreover, in a serious form, it causes severe stomach pain, bloody diarrhea, colitis and vomiting. Sometimes the infection can cause fever and kidney failure. In case of symptoms of E. coli, it is recommended to drink plenty of fluids. There is currently no cure for E. coli, but in most cases it is possible to recover at home without treatment.
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