Call board if your water tastes funny
I never thought I would be buying bottled water, but now I do. I live in Kapahulu, and my tap water always has a plastic/vinyl smell. Is this the new smell of chlorine, or is some plastic chemical leaching into the water supply? I smell it at restaurants, too. Is the water safe to drink, and what is causing this smell? Now I even use bottled water to make my coffee.
Answer: Call the Board of Water Supply at 748-5041.
The information you've given is "not enough to do an investigation," said water agency spokeswoman Su Shin.
"Any customer concerned about any water quality issue should call us. That will allow our water quality lab folks to investigate."
The smell could be due to many different things, she said.
"It could be on our end; it could be after the (water) meter, in the property pipes; there are so many different variables, especially when it comes to something (dealing) with smell," she said.
The Water Board has not received any similar complaints from the Kapahulu area.
Meanwhile, Shin said that every Board of Water Supply customer should have received the 2008 annual Water Quality Report, also known as the Consumer Confidence Report, by last Tuesday.
That report is required by the federal Environmental Protection Agency.
However, if you live in a multifamily dwelling, such as a condominium, only one report is sent, and that is to whoever is responsible for the billing.
The landlord or building manager is supposed to make the report available or post it for everyone to see, Shin said.
If, for some reason, you did not receive or see the report for Kapahulu, it is available on the Board of Water Supply Web site, www.boardofwatersupply.com. Click on "water quality," then on "water quality report."
You can find information for your specific area by typing in your address.
If you do not have access to a computer, call 748-5041.
In general, Shin assures you, the water "is absolutely safe to drink."
The intent of the Water Quality Report "is to be very transparent and to share with people all the information about the water that we're delivering to them," she said. All federal and state drinking water standards are being met, she said.
The report identifies the source of water for each area; all the detected contaminants and whether they meet safe drinking water standards; and describes any treatment process used.
According to the report, federal and state laws require the testing of 81 regulated primary contaminants and 16 unregulated contaminants.
All the contaminants are listed.
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Tuesday, July 8, 2008
The Web site for the Board of Water Supply is www.boardofwatersupply.com. An incorrect address was originally given in this article.
Got a question or complaint?
Call 529-4773, fax 529-4750, or write to Kokua Line, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210, Honolulu 96813. As many as possible will be answered. E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
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