As your Phoenix plumber, we’ve been getting a lot of questions lately after our recent heavy rain about water quality. In order to stay informed and keep our customers in the know, we sat down with David McNeil, Environmental Services Manager with the City of Tempe to find answers. Here are some highlights from our interview.
McNeil’s role with the city
“I’m responsible for ensuring that the quality of our drinking water and other water, our storm water and our waste water resources complies with the health-based and environmental-based requirements that are established at the federal, state and county level.”
“We’re held to hundreds of standards for water quality. We operate the third-largest municipal laboratory in the state so we conduct tests and analysis of thousands of drinking water samples annually. We regulate industries to make sure they are not polluting our sewer system and discharging toxic or corrosive chemicals to our sewer system.”
Runoff water and contaminants–should we be worried about our drinking water?
“In terms of what falls into the ground, what goes into our reservoirs, our canals, our streams and ultimately what makes it through our treatments plants, through our pipes and into the taps of our residential and commercial customers—the rain is inconsequential to that.
When you get really turbulent and muddy water and bacteria-laden water, we see that coming in. We have technology in place that is designed to ensure with no uncertainty that we treat water to ensure that that bacteria doesn’t make it through our system. We have instruments that measure the cloudiness of the water and we know how to adjust our chemical treatment to ensure we remove the dirt and mud and sediment more effectively as it moves through the treatment process.”
What we should be worried about
“What rain really effects, and it’s very short term, is our recreational bodies of water like lakes and Tempe Town Lake. Urban runoff goes into those lakes and you get spiked levels of bacteria. We wouldn’t recommend, for example, swimming in Tempe Town Lake immediately after a big rain event.”
“The important thing to recognize is there are times of year when there are slight fluctuations in flavor or taste but the fact is municipal drinking water systems conduct thousands of tests on our drinking water. We’re held to an extremely high standard. Personally, having a 10-year-old son and family and drinking a lot of water, I can’t think of another water source or even another liquid period that I have more confidence in in terms of safety.”
If you have concerns that you would like for your Phoenix plumber to help you address or would like to explore water treatment options for your home, contact Ben Franklin Plumbing AZ today. (602) 273-1740