Here in Southwest Florida there has been some confusion regarding bacteria contamination of drinking water and boil water notices. Here's some general considerations for folks who have "city water" versus those who have private wells.
For people who have water supplied by their municipality, it is usually a safe bet to listen to what the local Dept of Health has to say and follow their suggestions. If you have doubts about the quality of your water call a certified lab and have them test the water.
For folks who have private wells here are a few things to remember:
- If there has been flooding in your area, your well may have been contaminated by bacteria (including E.coli)
- For information regarding private wells and what to do after flooding you can go to the Florida Dept of Health's site www.doh.state.fl.us/environment/water/manual/floodinf.htm.
- Remember that even when done correctly, well disinfection does not always work
- The only way to know for sure that your well is free of bacteria is to call a state-certified lab and have them analyze the water
- Even if your area did not flood, remember that the EPA recommends that all private wells be tested at least once a year for bacteria (Total Coliforms and E. coli) by a state-certified lab
We've been getting a lot of calls and I hope this helps. Stay safe and be well.