In Terrebonne Parish, officials have declared the tap water safe to drink, they are urging people to avoid getting it in their noses.  A potentially deadly amoeba has been discovered in the residential water system.

Yesterday, Louisiana Department of Health officials notified the Schriever Water System and town officials of the dangerous amoeba's presence.  The offensive germ is Naegleria fowleri.  This nasty little piece of work can cause a brain infection that leads to the destruction of neural tissue. To make it even more confusing, symptoms may be similar to bacterial meningitis.

The CDC advises that residents should not let water go up the nose when bathing or swimming. They also suggest that kids not be allowed to play in sprinklers until the threat has passed.  Additionally, officials are advising that you run water for baths, washing dishes, and really anything for at least five minutes before use to flush out the pipes.

The parish is taking steps to ensure public safety, but those measures will take time.  A 60 day chlorine burn will ensure the water lines are sanitary.  This "burn" is achieved by boosting chlorine levels that would kill the offending germ.  For more information, check out the Louisiana Department of Health's page by clicking here.