Gage Rest Area closed indefinitely

Jan 12, 2024 | Press Release

DEMING – On Tuesday, January 9, 2024, in compliance with the New Mexico Environmental Department Drinking Water Bureau made the determination to close the Gage Rest Area due to received information of high Nitrate levels located in the drinking water.

Nitrate levels located in the drinking water at the rest area currently have an average of 14 mg/L. This is above the maximum contaminate level (MCL), of 10 mg/L.

What is being done?

The New Mexico Department of Transportation has closed the Gage Rest Area indefinitely.  Further testing and the possibility of a new improved water treatment system is being explored. The water treatment system will be returned to compliance as soon as possible.

For more information, please contact:

NMDOT D1 – Jesus Sandoval
2912 E Pine. St.
Deming, NM 88030

Additional Information About Nitrate in drinking water:

  • Nitrate in drinking water is a serious health concern for infants less than six months old.
  • DO NOT GIVE THE WATER TO INFANTS. *Infants below the age of six months who drink water containing nitrate in excess of the MCL could become seriously ill and, if untreated, may die. Symptoms include shortness of breath and blue baby syndrome. * Blue baby syndrome is indicated by blueness of the skin. Symptoms in infants can develop rapidly, with health deteriorating over a period of days. If symptoms occur, seek medical attention immediately.
  • Water, juice, and formula for children under six months of age should not be prepared with tap water. Bottled water or other water low in nitrates should be used for infants until further notice.
  • DO NOT BOIL THE WATER. Boiling, freezing, filtering, or letting water stand does not reduce the nitrate level. Excessive boiling can make the nitrates more concentrated because nitrates remain behind when the water evaporates.
  • Adults and children older than six months can drink the tap water (nitrate is a concern for infants because they can’t process nitrates in the same way adults can). However, if you are pregnant or have specific health concerns, you may wish to consult your doctor.