With the contaminated water crisis in Flint, Michigan dominating the news, you may be wondering: am I in danger of using poisonous water? This is a scary question to have to ask, since safe water is such an essential part of life. The citizens of Flint must now face the serious risks of lead contamination, which can be extremely harmful to children.
Nearly two years ago, Flint’s city government decided to draw the city’s water from a nearby river to save money. Over time, people started noticing that discolored, strange-tasting and foul-smelling tap water was causing rashes and health problems. Until recently, very little effort was made by city and state officials to correct the problem. Many children in Flint now have dangerously high amounts of lead in their blood, which can cause irreversible damage to their developing brains.
Does Utah Have Poisonous Water?
No. In fact, few cities in the United States have experienced problems with lead contamination. Utah’s water is absolutely safe to drink. It is even regarded by some people as the best-tasting tap water in the country, although that is purely opinion. Regardless of taste, Utah water is safe.
There is always a small amount of unavoidable contaminants in tap water, but they are only dangerous in unusually high levels. To avoid this, the Environmental Protection Agency sets standards and regulations for water content.
Utah water meets government standards for water quality. The only significant water issue in the state is the threat of drought. But such a threat is much easier to deal with than poisonous water.
How Can I Notice Poisonous Water?
If the appearance, taste, or smell of your water is worrying you, contact your city’s utilities department. But as we mentioned before, the threat of poisonous water is very small.
Just because the chance of contamination is low, you shouldn’t stop being cautious. Lead exposure is dangerous and can cause serious harm. Intellectual and motor skills can be greatly affected, especially in young children. If you suspect for any reason that your water is contaminated, you can have tests done to check lead levels in your blood. This is only helpful with recent exposure, however, because lead only stays in the bloodstream for a short time before being absorbed by the body.
Should I Buy Bottled Water?
Tap water is tested and regulated more closely than bottled water, so you may actually be better off not buying bottled water. Bottled water companies use words like “purified” and “naturally sourced” to appeal to customers. The final product is not much different than what comes out of your faucet at home.
If you’re concerned about your water quality, get a filter that you can easily install onto your faucet. This will be the cheapest long-term option, since you will always have to buy more bottles of water. Here are a few affordable faucet filters: