Disease, infections one good reason for Immokalee storm water improvements

With the tragic news of a child's serious infection from parasites in standing water just up the road in LaBelle, the Immokalee Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) says this is just one of several good reasons why it is moving so aggressively to reduce and channel standing water in our community. 

A 12-year-old boy in Hendry County is battling an infection from a single-cell organism called, Naegleria fowleri, commonly referred to as the, "brain-eating amoeba." 

"This is a tragic case and so close to Immokalee," explained Immokalee CRA Executive Director Bradley Muckel. "Dangers presented by standing water in yards and along streets is one of the reasons we are moving so aggressively to build new infrastructure to remove, naturally filter and dispose of storm water runoff." 

The Immokalee CRA completed last December a $3.5 million storm water collection system in South Immokalee, is currently making similar improvements to adjacent Colorado Avenue and will start soon on a storm water retention system along Immokalee Drive

Collier County health officials are quick to point out, according to the Naples Daily News, that water in Southwest Florida continues to be safe and that parasites and other threats, while constant and ever present in many forms in many kinds of water, do not pose significant public health risks and infections are rare. 

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