Scotland’s Drinking Water Worse Than England’s and Wales’

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Scotland’s drinking water has been found to be below the standard of that in Wales and England, according to a recent study by the Drinking Water Quality Regulator (DWQR). If you’re worried about the quality of your drinking water, contact Water Filter Way.

The annual report published by the DWQR examined 1554 samples of drinking water taken from customers’ taps in 2012, to test the quality of the water and proportion of contaminants present. It was found that almost three percent of the samples tested did not meet the minimum standards for trihalomethanes – chemical compounds that have been linked to health defects such as cancer.

Almost one in three of the failed samples also contained a bacteria called coliform, which though not harmful in themselves, come from faeces and suggest that other waterborne pathogens could be present. Only two of the samples were found to contain dangerous e-coli, though this alone could be construed as worrying.

Overall, 99.86 percent of the total samples were found to comply with standards – Scottish Water‘s best performance yet. However, the results of the study raised some concerns about the purity and reliability of private water supplies such as wells. 15 percent of samples taken from private water supplies were found to be contaminated with e-coli and a third contained the coliform bacteria.

The report said:

“[The study] shows that compliance in Scotland has improved considerably in the ten years since Scottish Water was formed. It also shows that there is more to do before water quality in Scotland consistently achieves the same standard as that in England and Wales.”

Scottish director of the Consumer Futures watchdog Trisha McAuley warned residents about the dangers of private water supplies, which are not the responsibility of Scottish Water but are still required to comply with regulations.

She said that the standard of water remained “complete unnacceptable” and “a risk to health”.

Scottish Water, meanwhile, was careful to assure its customers of the quality of its own public drinking water. A spokesman said:

“We welcome the DWQR’s report and confirmation that the quality of Scotland’s public drinking water is at an all-time high.”

The utility provider experienced a 31 percent drop in customer contacts last year in comparison to 2011; the majority of which were about discoloured water supplies.

It also announced it would be working to ‘optimise’ its treatment processes to cut the levels of trihalomethane in its supplies. So far the company has already replaced or improved 25 of its water treatment works and over 635 miles worth of pipes.

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