Is your drinking water safe?

Tracking your drinking water

Officials responsible for drinking water for the majority of the Tampa Bay region are blunt when talking about whether or not the water quality issues in Flint, Michigan, could happen here.

"Could it happen here?  No, it couldn't happen here," said Christine Owen, senior manager for regulatory compliance for Tampa Bay Water.

Owen gave 10News WTSP a tour of the surface water treatment plant in Tampa that provides about one-third of the drinking water to our region. The water is taken from the Alafia River and put through a nine-step process to decontaminate and stabilize.

"It's called a multi-barrier approach, so that you've got barriers in place that should one fail, you've got something else to pick it up," Owen said.

The quality is assured that even after it leaves by giant pipes to other parts of the Bay area, like St. Petersburg, the water is not corrosive.

"We are all good in the Tampa Bay area because of the corrosion control that we practice. That means it is not corrosive to whatever pipe material you have in your house," Owen said.

Owen says there may be slight differences in hardness and calcium of water, depending on an individual municipalities blend of ground/surface water. But bottom line, she says it's safe.

"It's very safe, it meets or is better than all the state and federal requirements," Owen said.

Resources...

St. Pete Water Quality Report

Tampa Water Quality Report

EPA Drinking Water Contaminants – Standards and Regulations

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Michigan governor apologizes for Flint water crisis

Obama declares state of emergency in Flint water crisis

Cher donates bottles of water to troubled Flint

National Guard called up to help in Flint water crisis


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