Tapping into lockdown: Cease of trade shows in water taste at Bristol and traces of coronavirus found in Paris


THE LOCKDOWN has seen unusual water reports both in the UK and abroad, as suppliers work continuously to offer safe drinking water to their customers.

Yesterday Bristol Post reported on city residents who had taken to Reddit to voice their concerns over ‘blue tinge’ and ‘taste of bleach’ in their water.

Bristol Water explained this is due to higher than usual amount of water in the pipes as many businesses are not trading.

Samantha Vince, Head of Water Quality at Bristol Water, commented: “To keep your water safe as it travels to your home, chlorine is added in very small, controlled amounts (usually below 1mg /litre) which is perfectly safe for consumption.

“Chlorine evaporates and because of this, the levels in your water vary on a daily basis.

“You might be noticing the taste more often right now than you previously have because commercial businesses are no longer operating as part of the coronavirus lockdown.

“This change influences the amount of water we have in the pipes, and might cause the level of chlorine to change before it reaches your home, making your water taste different.

“Regardless, your water is still perfectly safe and if the taste bothers you, try popping a jug of water in the fridge for a couple of hours which allows time for the chlorine to evaporate and reduce the taste.”

A spokesperson for Bristol Water explained that other tastes or smells in water, such as unpleasant bleach-like taste, are normally due to interactions with home fittings and not the tap water itself.

That’s why it’s important to make sure to use appropriate products, such as those approved by the Water Regulations Advisory Scheme, as even the small rubber seal around the tap could be the culprit.

A good way to test this is to try the taste of water from different taps to isolate the issue.

In terms of ‘blue tinge’, the company spokesperson explained that commonly people are noticing the reflection in their bath tub.

In the rare occasion when the tinge is actually coming from the water, it’s normally due to the use of bathroom block products or coating on brand-new household pipes.

Over in France, the lockdown water findings have been of a different kind, as small traces of the novel coronavirus have been discovered in the non-potable water supply in Paris.

News agency AFP quoted French officials, who reassured that the drinking water supply was ‘fine’.

According to the report, the Paris water authority’s laboratory detected tiny amounts of the virus in four of 27 samples collected from around the capital, and the network was shut down as precaution.

The non-potable water is usually used from networks like the Seine river for gardening and other activities.

Drinking water is supplied from a “totally independent” network and “can be consumed without any risk,” stressed Blauel, the city’s top environmental official.