In a clear plan to ensure that residents and businesses are provided with the clean and safe drinking water, the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Environmental Health sub-directorate has taken a pro-active approach, going an extra mile in their duties and invest in the state-of-the-art equipment, the latest in testing drinking water.
According to legislation, the sampling and testing of drinking water is supposed to be done once a month. The municipality, however, has decided to go an extra mile and do weekly sampling and testing to make sure that residents receive highest possible quality of drinking water. As if that was not enough, the municipality has also spent just less than a million rand to buy 35 state of the art latest mobile water sampling kits that will assist in giving accurate water readings on site.
Previously, the Environmental Health practitioners would take sterile containers to the site where they would collect water, put it in cooler boxes and transport it back to the laboratory where it would be processed and tested. This process would take longer for the results to be known.
One of our pillars is that we are a safe City and we want to be proactive so with this equipment our practitioners are able to test the quality of the water on site. By the time the samples are taken to the lab, an accurate indication of the quality of water coming from that particular area would be known. This exercise limits the risks to the consumer, as risks are identified immediately.
Member of the Mayoral Committee for Public Health, Councillor Lance Grootboom revealed the equipment and the pro-active measures at a media tour held by the sub-directorate to take the media through the process of water sampling and testing.
“As a safe City we want to be proactive so with this equipment our practitioners are able to test the quality of the water in the field without necessarily going back to the lab and wait two days to get results. That also reduces the burden of water-borne diseases,” said MMC Lance Grootboom.
Acting Principal Senior Environmental Health Practitioner, Dirk Steyn said the new equipment and the weekly sampling and testing will be the most efficient way. “With this process the chances of water borne diseases are extremely slim,” said Steyn.
The sub-directorate has got 77 sampling points across the City, including reservoirs. This, to ensure that the result is a true reflection of water quality.
During the water sampling, a PH meter and a colorimeter is used to test the PH level as well as the number of millilitres of free chlorine in the water. National standards require a PH level between 6 and 8.5 as the human bodies PH level is 7.4.
Acting Environmental Health Deputy Director, Dr Patrick Nodwele said the municipality always maintains the highest possible standard.