Archive for the ‘Water’ Category

Safe Drinking Water

Tuesday, January 26th, 2016
Not To Be Taken for Granted

Not To Be Taken for Granted

Most of us probably take safe drinking water for granted.  I bring bottled water with me whenever I work in developing countries, as you cannot always trust the local water supply. I keep a bottle at the sink with my toothbrush and toothpaste on either side of the bottle as a reminder to use the bottled water when brushing my teeth or taking medications.  The citizens of Flint, Michigan did not take such precautions as they were unaware of the dangerous levels of lead in their public drinking water. The long-term consequences to children who consumed this water include impaired cognitive functioning. It is absolutely frightening to think that we cannot trust the water that comes from our kitchen tap.

I typically think of how to stay informed and prepared for water safety threats of a short-term nature. One of our neighboring communities was inconvenienced after a local construction company struck a water line when it dug in an area that was off-limits. After residents reported that the tap water was muddy, the community Facebook page issued an alert to advise residents to use bottled water until further notice. I always keep a supply of bottled water on hand for such an emergency, as I do not want to be in the position of going to the store to purchase water when I have an urgent need and so does everyone else. I also have a hazard alert on my smart phone to ensure that I receive the alerts in a timely manner. I expect that the situation in Flint will be addressed with some type of victims’ fund for those who have been harmed, along the lines of what was set up for the 9-11 survivors or those affected by the BP oil spill. These funds are becoming too common for our failure to oversee safe practices.