New York Gov.
Andrew Cuomo has ordered the state to stop drinking water from the West Nile virus outbreak’s water treatment plant after it became contaminated with peroxide water.
Cuomo, in a press conference Tuesday, announced the move after finding the facility had become contaminated with Peroxide-Free Water from the Flint, Mich., water system.
The New York City Department of Health said Peroxide Water had become “irremediable” in some parts of the city, and that it had been transferred to a landfill in Westchester County.
Cuomo ordered the city to stop water service to the Westchester facility and ordered all water supplies to be tested.
The governor said it was “in the best interest of the state and the city” to take action against the plant.
“I will continue to work to ensure that the residents of New York, and our water system, are protected and protected from the virus,” Cuomo said.
“The governor’s order is a critical first step in preventing New Yorkers from being exposed to the virus.”
Cuomo said the order will help New Yorkers “continue to get the best quality water possible for their families.”
The governor added that his administration has already asked the federal government to help him combat the virus.
The move follows a letter from the governor’s office in which he asked the Environmental Protection Agency to establish an emergency operation center in West Virginia to respond to water safety emergencies and to coordinate with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, according to the New York Times.
Cuomo’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Associated Press.
He said Tuesday that he had not yet been contacted by the EPA.
Cuomo also ordered a new statewide monitoring program to monitor water supply and water quality.
The state has been working with local, state and federal partners to monitor the spread of the virus in West, Ohio, and Indiana.
Cuomo said Wednesday that more than 1,000 West Virginia residents have tested positive for the virus, which has killed at least 18 people in the state.
New York’s governor has ordered an additional 6,000 people to be placed on a statewide list of people who may have contracted the virus from drinking contaminated water.
The order is expected to last at least two weeks, the Times reported.
The water is to be pumped into a tank, and treated with chlorine to make it less corrosive to pipes and sinks.