Portion of Chattahoochee River will remain closed, according to latest update

According to a Facebook post on Friday afternoon, the Chattachoochee River in the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area will remain closed for water recreation based on guidance from public health professionals. The post says they are testing daily, and the test results are showing improvements, but the results are not yet meeting all of the parameters. 


A big stretch of the Chattahoochee River remains shuts down Thursday night because dangerous levels of E. coli. The bacteria still contaminates the water at the Big Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant in Roswell. 

Fulton County officials say they’re trying to clean the contamination with microorganisms, good bacteria to help bring water at the plant back into balance.

A sewage spill late last week dumped E. coli at the treatment plant, killing off microorganisms that help keep the water safe, forcing the shutdown of miles of the river. 

David Clark, director of Fulton County Public Works, says the county is investigating how the bad bacteria got into the plant.

"We’re not sure what the cause is yet," Clark said.

Clark says it isn’t clear how much longer it’ll take to clean up the water, but he hopes sometime in the next 48 hours.

FOX 5 asked Clark why it has taken so long to fix the problem.

"We literally have to let the bugs, the bacteria, the microorganisms grow, so they can do their job in the treatment of waste water," Clark said. 

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The Chattahoochee River remains closed just south of a wastewater treatment plant in Roswell as E. coli was discovered.

FOX 5 also asked who is responsible for the contamination and who will be held accountable.

"We will be able to answer that question once we find out the details of why the biological process failed," Clark said.

In the meantime, people can’t swim in a 15-mile stretch of water. 

Mary Carter Thornton can’t let her dog go near it. 

"I’m scared," Thornton said. "You never know what they can pick up through their paws."

Symptoms of an E. coli infection include diarrhea, severe stomach cramps, and vomiting.