Samples from the river taken over the weekend showed lead levels to be roughly four times higher than officially permitted. Some discoloration had also been noted.
Ukrainian officials said that the problem had resulted from a dam reservoir overflow at the Baya Borsa mine in Romania which had spilled dangerous chemicals into the river.
The Tisza river continues on through Hungary and joins the Danube river in Serbia.
Chemical spills into the Tisza in Romania have occurred quite frequently. Last month cyanide released at a Romanian gold mine caused one of the worst environmental disasters in European history.
As in past instances, Ukrainian authorities banned the use of water from the Tisza for drinking or industrial processes.
dpa sbk wo
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Received by NewsEdge Insight: 03/29/2000 04:35:21
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