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  1. #1
    Gird your loins Daisy Hill's Avatar
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    12.14.17 @ 05:44 PM
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    Default Portland Water officials panic when drunk pees in water supply

    and on the other side of the poo coin is what we in America do.


    Portland reservoir urination raises few health or scientific concerns -- but it is pee
    Published: Wednesday, June 15, 2011, 8:24 PM


    Stephanie Yao/The Oregonian
    Portland stores its treated drinking water at five historic open reservoirs, including this one at Mount Tabor Park. Health officials say the open-air reservoirs are risky, but reservoir supporters say there’s little proof of that. For the administrator of the Portland Water Bureau, the decision Wednesday to drain 7.8 million gallons of drinking water from a Mount Tabor reservoir comes down to six words:

    "Do you want to drink pee?" David Shaff asked.

    About 1:30 a.m. Wednesday, water officials say, a 21-year-old Molalla man was caught on camera urinating in one of Portland's uncovered reservoirs -- one that provides water to a majority of Portlanders.

    From a gross-out perspective, that's enough to make residents wary of turning on the tap. "I think I'm going to have a Coke with my lunch today," said city Commissioner Randy Leonard, who oversees the Water Bureau. The bureau recently began work on an $80 million project elsewhere to comply with federal rules to cover city reservoirs.

    But does tossing out so much water -- at a cost of more than $36,000 -- make sense from a scientific or health angle? Urine is pretty sterile chemically speaking, said Dave Stone, an assistant professor in toxicology at Oregon State University who specializes in chemical contaminants in water.

    "It's inappropriate behavior. But how many animals are doing that or birds?" he said. "I don't want to second-guess the city, but I can't think of anything chemically that would have me be concerned."

    But Chris Wanner, director of operations for the Water Bureau, said he was worried -- though less about the urine than about unknown items thrown into the water by a group of five people who hung around Mount Tabor early Wednesday.

    Even so, Portland's five open reservoirs are susceptible to dead rodents, birds or bird poop. Water quality is tested, but reservoirs aren't drained because of dead animals. "We look at that as part of the business of open reservoirs," Wanner said. Water officials disconnected the same reservoir in April 2010 after tests found E. coli in samples. Five months before that, they issued a rare boil alert after tests at a Washington Park reservoir found E. coli.

    Dr. Gary Oxman -- the Multnomah County health officer who advises officials on infectious diseases such as salmonella, hepatitis and H1N1 -- said the average bladder holds 6 to 8 ounces of urine and would be vastly diluted in a reservoir. "The health risk associated with that is really, really tiny," he said. But because of concerns about the unknown objects, he did say draining the water is "an appropriate thing to do."

    A surveillance camera captured the incident. Once officials contacted the group, and after the 21-year-old was told he urinated in drinking water and his actions were disrespectful, he reportedly said, "I didn't mean to show disrespect. I thought this was a sewage treatment plant."

    Police did not cite the man or his friends, though video and reports by police and the Water Bureau will be submitted to the Multnomah County district attorney's office for possible criminal charges. The Oregonian is not naming the 21-year-old because he was not arrested or charged with a crime.
    "It'll kind of depend on what the surveillance video shows," said Sgt. Pete Simpson, a police spokesman. "He's not out of the water yet."

    Draining the reservoir will take several days, keeping it offline until perhaps late next week. Shaff originally said dumping the water would cost about $600,000 in lost revenue but he later clarified that his math was way off and that the water would have sold for a retail price of almost $28,500. Disposal fees are expected to reach about $7,600.

    Shaff noted that Portland's Bull Run water supply contains billions of gallons of water, and it makes sense to clean the reservoir. And it goes back to the idea of drinking pee. "Answer the question," he said. "It has nothing to do with 'scientifically.' "Most people," he added, "are gonna be pretty damn squeamish about that."

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  2. #2
    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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  3. #3
    Eye suffacozza YEWW! Goo's Avatar
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  4. #4
    Summer Nights in Cabo SNIC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brett View Post
    Fucking Seenbad, drunk again!!!
    My thoughts exactly.

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  5. #5
    Don't Touch the Dog There axebrian's Avatar
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    Water conservation at it's finest
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  6. #6
    Atomic Punk Dave's Dreidel's Avatar
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    How much is in a full bladder piss, maybe a quart?

    So, a quart of piss is enough to drain out 7.8 MILLION GALLONS of water?

    WTF? It's an open resevoir, birds are pissing and shitting in it every fucking day.
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  7. #7
    carpe damn diem billy007's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave's Dreidel View Post
    How much is in a full bladder piss, maybe a quart?

    So, a quart of piss is enough to drain out 7.8 MILLION GALLONS of water?

    WTF? It's an open resevoir, birds are pissing and shitting in it every fucking day.
    Not even:

    Dr. Gary Oxman...said the average bladder holds 6 to 8 ounces of urine

  8. #8
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billy007 View Post
    Not even:

    Dr. Gary Oxman...said the average bladder holds 6 to 8 ounces of urine
    I guess I've got an above average bladder then. Back in college when I'd sneak in to stay overnight with my girlfriend at her dorm, sometimes I would have to take a leak. Being that I couldn't use the common bathroom, I would take those 20 OZ soda bottles and fill at least one, if not close to two. Pretty sick when I think about it now, but then again, that could describe half of my time in college

    The part of this story that bothers me isn't the guy pissing in it, it's the part where they said they fish out dead animals regularly and don't drain the water. That would seem to be more of a concern due to the diseases they carry, no?

    Most people in Portland are now buying bottled water, I would imagine.
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  9. #9
    Gird your loins Daisy Hill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by axebrian View Post
    Water conservation at it's finest
    he was just trying to recycle!

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  10. #10
    Baluchitherium
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    Quote Originally Posted by Goo View Post

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  11. #11
    Atomic Punk LLFHS's Avatar
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    Jeez.....it's very likely that we've all unknowingly digested stuff a few times in our lives that are far worse than a couple ounces of piss. When you think about all the things that can sneak into our food at the hands of careless/angry restaurant workers and lax food processing center conditions, you'd probably just stop eating altogether.

    Shit happens....sometime on our plate. It's pretty unavoidable so just relax and hope that your immune system is up to snuff.
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  12. #12
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    the idiot should be forced to pay the city the full cost.

  13. #13
    Baluchitherium
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    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    the idiot should be forced to pay the city the full cost.
    Naaa, the idiot who ordered the draining should be ordered to pay the cost. Urine is pretty harmless, I've had to use it to clean wounds (extreme circumstances). The fact that there were dead animals in the water on a regular basis is more a cause for concern....Decaying bodies produce tons of harmful bacteria and diseases, which at best will give you a case of the shits!


    Given the choice between a miniscule amount of pee and a rotten corpse (even an equally small amount) of god knows what animal the choice is clear.
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  14. #14
    Eruption
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    Draining millions of gallons because of a tiny volume of piss is an expensive and wasteful emotional reaction instead of a rational reaction. Even if the guy had HIV or something, the virus could not survive in the cold open water for long, and certainly not after the inevitable chlorine treatment that most municipal supplies add before it gets to your house.

 

 

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