UNH testing campus sewage as part of virus surveillance

Colebrook restaurant closed for deep-cleaning after staff members test positive
Published: Oct. 28, 2020 at 12:46 PM EDT
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The University of New Hampshire is testing sewage on campus as part of its surveillance for the coronavirus.

The sampling will be used in addition to twice-weekly nasal tests.

“Sewage sampling can be a valuable surveillance tool because it can provide an early warning to possible infection hot spots on campus and help identify areas where the virus may be present but not detected in individuals because they aren’t showing symptoms,” said Paula Mouser, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering.

Traces of the virus’s genetic material can be found in human sewage. The samples will be taken from manholes, each representing wastewater from a grouping of two to five dorms.

There are 10 residence hall groups being tested, representing 4,400 students.



A North Country restaurant has closed for a deep cleaning after two staffers tested positive for COVID-19.

“We could stay open, but for safety reasons we are just going to shut down for a couple of weeks and clean and give the staff a chance to self-monitor,” Rick Nadig, owner of the Black Bear Tavern Sports and Restaurant in Colebrook, told the Caledonian-Record on Monday.

Nadig, who has over 20 staffers, said state health officials recommend that anyone at the tavern for the past week and a half to monitor their health.

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