A public statement has now been released by Squaw Valley Ski Holdings addressing confirmed findings of E. coli and coliform bacteria in the drinking water. The initial health reports were released on Nov. 8 and Squaw Valley has since been working to fully eradicate the contamination and restore water quality to normal. Restaurants at upper mountain have not reopened despite Squaw Valley’s reported progress and drinking the water is still not allowed, but top-to-bottom skiing has continued. There have been no reports of illness related to the contamination at upper mountain.
The extended statement made by Squaw Valley named the flooding of one of their upgraded water systems had been caused by an uncharacteristic downpour, resulting in the contamination of the drinking water at upper mountain. According to the statement, Squaw Valley was just one of several water systems in Placer County affected by the rainstorm and they maintain that the contamination was limited to just one system on the resort. Because the issue was addressed soon after its discovery, the contaminated water never reached the public. The issue was discovered during routine testing, after which they immediately contacted the Squaw Valley Public Service District and the Placer County Environmental Health. They have since teamed up with leaders in water safety and have been working toward restoring water quality. Safety continues to be of the highest concern, so Squaw Valley doesn’t plan to resume regular water usage until they regain normal levels. Guests at the resort will continue to have full access to all facilities at Squaw Valley and free bottled water will also be provided. While they continue to work alongside experts in water safety, Squaw Valley announced that they will keep guests informed and updated as to the progress of the matter.