Several LSU Greek chapters must test for COVID after 'high traces' of virus found in wastewater system

2 years 7 months 4 weeks ago Wednesday, August 18 2021 Aug 18, 2021 August 18, 2021 11:00 PM August 18, 2021 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - Members of multiple LSU fraternities and sororities must get tested for COVID-19 after traces of the virus were found in the campus wastewater system.

On Thursday, a notice sent out to members of Greek chapters that have houses on Sorority Row told them they must get tested at an approved on-campus site by 6 p.m. Friday, adding that a failure to get tested could constitute a code of conduct violation and may "impact your ability to remain on campus and participate in any in-person activities." 

LSU spokesman, Ernie Ballard, told WBRZ on Thursday the notice went out after "high traces" of COVID appeared in wastewater testing results taken from parts of the campus. The university contacted all chapters located in the area where the virus was found.

"There are about 2,400 to 3,000 members of Greek life that received the email that need to be tested," said one sorority member. 

Worries began to rise among members who are looking forward to an in-person rush kickoff Saturday.

Ballard said "We are assessing the situation as it pertains to rush, and we will factor in both wastewater and the results of the individual testing in our decision."

Of the 11 wastewater sites tested on campus, researchers only found high traces of the virus near Sorority Row.

WBRZ asked LSU about all of the other buildings in that area that aren't Greek houses.
Officials say those buildings are on a separate site.

LSU introduced the wastewater testing program last fall to help monitor the campus for potential COVID outbreaks. The university said it checks the water a few times each week. 

On Wednesday, LSU reported that about 40 percent of its student body reported being vaccinated for the coronavirus so far.


Read: September 2020 WBRZ.com report related to LSU testing campus wastewater to track possible cases 

WATCH: Summer 2020 WBRZ report by Johnston von Springer about developing the wastewater testing process

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