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PHOENIX -- An E. coli scare in San Tan Valley has residents upset with the way the utilities company handled notification.

Johnson Utilities informed residents early Wednesday that presence of the bacteria had been found in the water several days earlier. It recommended boiling tap water before drinking.

The company made the discovery Aug. 18 during routine sampling. Subsequent retesting produced negative results.

In a statement released in the afternoon, the company said, "The drinking water rules require a drinking water system to issue the warning if any resamples are positive for total coliform" but that the initial positive results were "believed to be false since they contradicted the results of our previous regular sampling."

The statement went on to say that, "Water systems do get contaminated from time to time; however, in this case, we believe there never was any contamination."

Customers remain agitated.

The school district had asked families to include bottled water with their children's lunches.

Schools in the Florence school district were taking precautions as well.

KTAR Newsroom,

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