The athletes competing in the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Summer Olympics are facing yet another health scare.
According to The New York Times, the swimmers, sailors and windsurfers competing have been urged by health experts in Brazil to keep their mouths closed due to contaminated water.
“Foreign athletes will literally be swimming in human crap, and they risk getting sick from all those microorganisms,” said Dr. Daniel Becker, a local pediatrician in Rio. “It’s sad but also worrisome.”
The water was polluted by a nearby sewage plant which pours into it. Dead human and animal bodies can be found in the water as well.
Government and local scientists performed numerous tests on the water and found a virus which can cause diarrhea and vomiting, along with another that can be fatal to those with weakened immune systems.
The polluted water has been a major issue for those living in Rio for quite some time.
“Our biggest plague, our biggest environmental problem, is basic sanitation,” said environmentalist Andrea Correa. “The Olympics has woken people up to the problem.”
The water is not the only health scare those competing in Rio are worried about. Numerous athletes have dropped out of the games over fears of the Zika virus. Us Weekly also reported that the Australian team recently revealed they would not be staying in the Olympic village due to bad living conditions.
The 2016 Olympics kick off Friday, Aug. 5.