Ebola in Wastewater Webinar Held this Week

On November 4, The Water Environment Federation (WEF) and the Water Environment Research Foundation (WERF) held a webinar entitled “Wastewater Worker Safety – Addressing Concerns on Ebola in Wastewater.” Presenters from CDC, WERF, and Spartanburg Water in South Carolina shared information on what is known about Ebola, what research is still needed, and what protective practices can help prevent exposure and reduce risk to wastewater workers.  Because there is limited data on the fate and transport of Ebola in wastewater collection and treatment systems, it is recommended that wastewater workers wear protective clothing, limit exposure to raw sewage, and practice basic hygiene.  Guidance from CDC and other sources will be updated as more data and information become available.  A recently held WERF/WEF experts panel determined three research needs including:  the efficacy of disinfectants against Ebola in medical facilities and drinking water and wastewater treatment plants; survival of Ebola in human waste and the environment; and transmission risk through different pathways.  A recorded video of the webinar and the presentation slides are available for download at:  http://www.wef.org/EbolaWastewaterConcerns/.