Swimmers flee after smelling rat in public pool, Monday August 25, 2008 Hong Kong
Aug 25 2008, 07:45 AM
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Source and Credits : The Standard
Swimmers flee after smelling rat in public pool
A Tsueng Kwan O public pool where a rat was found on Sunday has been closed for regular sanitization work today.The Leisure and Cultural Services Department said it will gear up inspection at all 36 public pools across the city.
According to the department, there have been no new rat sightings at the pool from where swimmers fled on Sunday after a rat appeared in the water.Pool officials hurriedly called in pest control but by the time they arrived from the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department, the rodent had drowned.
The Tsueng Kwan O reopen at 7:30pm today and then shut at its regular time of 10pm.
(Water from pools being drained completely)
Swimmers fled a Tseung Kwan O pool in panic yesterday after a rat appeared in the water.Pool officials hurriedly called in pest control but by the time they arrived from the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department, the rodent had drowned.
The incident caused the pool to be closed for three hours but despite being sanitized, few people returned later.Sai Kung district councillor Gary Fan Kwok-wai said there had been no previous complaints about the pool. He also said there had been no concerns voiced about the large refuse dump about 100 meters away.
(Not many people visited the pool after it was reopened)
"We suspect the rat may have come from the refuse collection point," Fan said. He also said the water quality at the Tseung Kwan O pool had always been satisfactory when tested in the past. However, this is not the first time a rat has been found in the main pool.
In February last year, swimmers were given a similar scare when a dead rat dropped into the pool, apparently from the beak of a bird overhead. In yesterday's incident, hygiene officials removed the rat's carcass and said they would investigate the incident but refused to comment further.
A spokesman for the Leisure and Cultural Services Department - which runs Hong Kong's public swimming pools - described the appearance of the rat as a "rare incident." The spokesman added that other pools at the facility were not affected by the incident and remained opened.
According to medical experts, rat urine can spread Weil's disease, which can result in renal and liver failure. Rats can also spread hantavirus and E.coli.
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