Body found in Cecil Hotel water tank: What's being done to clean the water supply

The city of Los Angeles is trying to flush out a hotel's water supply, after a woman's body was found inside a tank.

Inside the Cecil Hotel, people are trying to cope with the chlorinated water as police try to find a killer.

The city is using chlorine to flush the hotel's entire water system after the gruesome discovery of a woman's body inside one of the rooftop tanks, that may have been there for as long as two and a half weeks.

Four tanks connect to the hotel's drinking supply.

And during those weeks, hundreds of residents and hotel guests have been using it.

"It really turns my stomach," hotel resident Alvin Taylor said. "That's why a lot of people left and gone to another hotel. Just the thought of it for so long."

The woman inside the tank was 21-year-old Elisa Lam, a tourist from Vancouver, Canada, who arrived in Los Angeles on Jan. 26.

Surveillance video shows her acting oddly in the hotel elevator, as if she's hiding from someone.

But Katie Orphan says Lam didn't seem odd at all when they met.

"She was very outgoing," Orphan said. "Very lively, very friendly."

Orphan is the manager of a bookstore around the corner from the hotel, one of the last places Lam was seen by anyone.

That was Jan. 31.

The young woman planned to see more of California, police say.

Her parents flew down to Los Angeles to plead for the city to help find their daughter.

Outside the family's restaurant near Vancouver, a memorial has been built for a young life lost too soon in an unforgettable manner.

"It feels like the beginning of a noir novel," Orphan said. "Like this is the beginning of a Raymond Chandler story. Phillip Marlowe is going to figure out what happened. And, unfortunately this is real life."


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