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Officials Say Regional COVID Spike Affecting Water Supply In Norman

City of Norman
The municipal Campbell Water Treatment Plant in Norman, Okla..

The city of Norman on Friday asked residents to help conserve water as a critical need for oxygen to treat COVID-19 patients in the region's hospitals has led to a reduction in the supply of oxygen available to municipal water agencies.

"Due to significant escalations in hospitalization resulting from the spread of the Delta Variant of COVID-19, hospitals in portions of Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Kansas have been purchasing large quantities of oxygen products," the city said in a statement. "Hospitals and other healthcare facilities caring for patients in need of essential medical treatments such as high-flow oxygen therapy and ventilator support are receiving priority service from such vendors resulting in a reduction in the amount of oxygen products available to municipal water agencies."

"The Campbell Water Treatment Plant uses liquid oxygen (LOX) to form ozone which is used in the treatment of drinking water. The ozone treatment is used to treat for taste and odor in drinking water and has other treatment benefits."

"Norman residents will continue to receive safe, high quality drinking water during this time. Customers may notice an increase in the taste and odor due to a reduction in ozone treatment," the city said.

The disruption comes the same month officials in Orlando, Fla., made the same appeal to citizens due to the spike in COVID-19 hospitalizations in that state.

Chris joined Public Radio Tulsa as a news anchor and reporter in April 2020. He’s a graduate of Hunter College and the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism, both at the City University of New York.
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