CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The city of Corpus Christi provides extensive bacteria protection for children utilizing splash pads across the city.
This protection is in place as other Texas cities have seen fatalities for kids after splash pad usage. The city of Arlington discovered a child died from a parasite picked up last week during a visit to a city-run water area.
In Corpus Christi, city officials say they keep splash pads clean through automatic chlorinators, automatic PH control systems, and sanitation UV light systems that measure levels throughout the day for unusual readings.
Additionally, it said city crews test for proper chlorine and PH levels every day before splash pads open.
The Centers for Disease Control and prevention confirmed the presence of the amoeba in water samples in Arlington late last week.
Officials there said there were gaps in the splash pad's daily inspection during the time the child had visited, including checking for chlorine, the disinfectant used to prevent that type of amoeba. Experts said this type of amoeba usually lives in lakes and ponds, but can grow anywhere warm water sits.
"If you have children who are playing with water hoses like we used to do when I was kids, it's worth running some of the water out of that water hose, clearing it out," Tarrant County chief epidemiologist Russ Jones said. "But ideally, preventing water from going up the nose is the way you prevent this from happening."
The city of Arlington said it will conduct a review of the parks-and-rec department. Including identifying the cause of the infection, within the month.
Local officials maintain and service the wading pool at the Bayfront Park fountain on Shoreline Drive, saying they routinely test for chlorine and PH three times a day, seven days a week. the splash pads are open through October.