• A junior high school teacher in the Japanese city of Yokosuka left a tap on for months starting June last year
  • The teacher believed it would help against COVID-19, but it only wasted more than 4,000 tons of water 
  • The teacher, the school's principal and vice-principal will pay for half of the $27,320 bill

A teacher at a junior high school in Japan's Kanagawa prefecture left a tap open for months in hopes of stopping COVID-19 infections from spreading, but it only resulted in a water bill exceeding $27,000.

The unnamed Mabori Junior High School teacher, who was in charge of the maintenance of the school's pool, continued to supply the pool with water for about two and a half months starting from June of last year, Japanese broadcaster NHK reported.

Chlorine and filtering machines normally maintain the pool's water quality, but "the teacher somehow got the wrong idea that pouring new water in would also do the trick and even help prevent COVID," local education board official Akira Kojiri was quoted as saying by the AFP.

While other staff members from the school reportedly switched off the tap whenever they noticed it, their colleague switched it back on.

Around 4,000 tons of water was supplied to the pool as a result, or enough water to fill the pool about 11 times, a report by Japanese newspaper Mainichi said.

The city of Yokosuka has since requested for the teacher, the school's principal and vice-principal to pay half of the resulting 3.5 million yen ($27,320) water bill, or around $13,560, while the rest of the amount will be shouldered by the city.

All three have indicated their intention to pay, according to the NHK report.

"We deeply apologize to the citizens for causing damage to the city and would like to work to prevent this from reoccurring," the Yokosuka City Board of Education said.

Japan has reported a total of 7,643,924 COVID-19 cases and 29,300 deaths, government data showed.

Vaccination remains the best way to slow down the spread of the virus that causes the disease, SARS-CoV-2, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said.

"COVID-19 vaccines are effective at preventing you from getting sick. COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective at preventing severe illness, hospitalizations, and death," the agency claimed.

The CDC also recommended people to wear well-fitting masks, wash their hands, practice social distancing and avoid poorly ventilated spaces, among other things, for their protection.

Representation. A junior high teacher in Japan supplied his school's pool with water for two and a half months because he believed it would help in fighting against COVID-19. Mariakray/Pixabay