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Municipal water deemed safe and disease free

JOBURG – Joburg Water has engaged with external and independent laboratories to conduct typhoid tests for bacteria.

No evidence of contaminated municipal water in recent typhoid fever cases.

WhatsApp group chats in the Northcliff Melville Times distribution area shared warnings that their water could lead to typhoid cases that were being experienced.

Like in many areas these messages and social media posts reached a wide audience, pushing government and health entities to set the record clear. The National Institute for Communicable Diseases noted these statements alleging that currently cases of enteric fever in certain towns or provinces are caused by contaminated municipal water, or that the bacteria causing enteric fever have been identified in certain municipal water sources.

They stated that these are factually incorrect and that there is no evidence that recent cases of enteric fever are linked to contaminated municipal water in any part of the country.

Additionally, there is no evidence that the bacteria causing enteric fever have recently been identified in municipal water sources anywhere in the country. City of Johannesburg Environment Infrastructure Service Department MMC Michael Sun has also come out to reassure the public that the City’s tap water is safe. Sun had recently visited Johannesburg Water’s Cydna Laboratory in Houghton and was pleased with the efforts to ensure safe water for the public and the ability to detect any potential risks.

He stated, “The parameters measured are well within the South African National Standards (SANS) for drinking water quality standards (SANS 241:2015) and no harmful bacteria had been detected at the Johannesburg Water’s potable water reservoirs in the recent tests.”

The laboratory team conducts daily sampling for microbiological analysis and chemical analysis on a number of selected sampling points across the distribution network in Johannesburg. The quality of drinking water in the distribution network on determinants tested met legislated standards. All physical, chemical, and biological health-related parameters were compliant with the SANS 241 drinking water quality standard. Sun said that as an extra precaution, Joburg Water has engaged with external and independent laboratories to conduct typhoid tests for bacteria. Results of the latest tests will be communicated as soon as they are available.

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