Authorities say no threat to local drinking water supplies


Tuesday, October 2nd 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6


The FBI has concluded its investigation into two separate incidents that caused a lot of concern Monday night.

Federal and city investigators were looking into a possible contamination at Lake Yahola - one of the city's drinking water sources. News on Six reporter Tami Marler says city officials say there was never any threat to Tulsa's water supply. Lake Yahola does sometimes contribute to our tap water, but it's offline because of excessive algae.

Monday, two fishermen at the lake told authorities they saw a small, low-flying plane "drop" something that looked like white powder into the water. And in light of the recent terrorist attacks, the city and FBI sprang into action, just in case. Clayton Edwards is the city's deputy director of environmental operations. "The reservoir was already patrolled as part of our standard procedure since the September 11th attack. We immediately started taking some water samples and those will be analyzed by the lab." The FBI says the aircraft was in a holding pattern over the lake, waiting to land at Tulsa International Airport, the puff of smoke the fishermen saw was likely a backfire.

The second incident was at Lake Oolagah, where witnesses reported seeing three aircraft flying low over the water, leaving a trail of yellow smoke. The FBI says they were practicing for an upcoming air show in Claremore.

Officials appreciate the public's diligence in both these cases, but both turned out to be false alarms.