Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Tests reveal tap water 'drinkable'



Tests reveal tap water 'drinkable'

Tests reveal tap water 'drinkable'

Random tests of Phnom Penh's water supply reveal that tap-water in certain parts

of the city is apparently safe to drink but two brands of bottled Cambodian water

failed purity tests.

The tests, which were commissioned by the Phnom Penh Post, were carried out by the

Pasteur Institute last week.

Water drawn from the Tonle Bassac in front of the Royal Palace also appeared to pass

safety tests.

Many Phnom Penh residents draw water from the rivers.

Samples taken from a large container of Anglo Natural Drinking Water showed high

levels of organic matter and nitrites.

Three randomly-selected liter bottles of Angkor water also failed on high nitrite

levels.

The conclusion of the chemical analysis on three samples of each brand came back

"non-potable".

The tap water result is perhaps the most surprising, especially as previous surveys

indicated the city's water supply to be harmful.

However, newly-laid pipes are said to be channeling clean water to some areas of

the city, including the neighborhood around Street 242 where one sample was taken.

Fractured water pipes under much of the city often result in raw sewage mixing with

clean water supplies and experts advise people not to drink untreated tap-water.

Although some pipes have been replaced recently with French aid, many areas do not

have bacteria-free water and leaks in the pipes mean that water does not reach the

outer suburbs.

Commenting on the test results for Anglo Water, Dr Chea Chhay of the Health Ministry

described the sample as "very toxic, no good" and said it contained a high

level of bacteria (between 2.10 and 2.15 mg of organic matter per litre).

The doctor believes the government should thoroughly test all bottled water before

allowing it to be sold.

The nitrite level in the Anglo water was between 0.150 and 0.210 mg per litre and

in the Angkor Wat brand between 0.050 and 0.1.

Dr Chea believes ingesting a high level of nitrite would cause health problems over

time, but not in the short term.

Previous tests carried out by the U.N. also pointed to contamination in some brands

of local bottled water.

MOST VIEWED

  • Phnom Penh placed in two-week lockdown

    The government has decided to place Phnom Penh in lockdown for two weeks, effective April 14 midnight through April 28, as Cambodia continues to grapple with the ongoing community outbreak of Covid-19, which has seen no sign of subsiding. According to a directive signed by Prime Minister

  • Cambodia on the verge of national tragedy, WHO warns

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia warned that the country had reached another critical point amid a sudden, huge surge in community transmission cases and deaths. “We stand on the brink of a national tragedy because of Covid-19. Despite our best efforts, we are

  • Hun Sen: Stay where you are, or else

    Prime Minister Hun Sen warned that the two-week lockdown of Phnom Penh and adjacent Kandal provincial town Takmao could be extended if people are not cooperative by staying home. “Now let me make this clear: stay in your home, village, and district and remain where

  • Vaccination open to foreigners in Cambodia

    The Ministry of Health on April 8 issued an announcement on Covid-19 vaccination for foreigners residing and working in Cambodia, directing the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training and local authorities to register them. Health minister Mam Bun Heng, who is also head of the inter-ministerial

  • Ministry names types of business permitted amid lockdown

    The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training singled out 11 types of business that are permitted to operate during the lockdown of Phnom Penh and Takmao town, which run through April 28. Those include (1) food-processing enterprises and slaughterhouses; (2) providers of public services such as firefighting, utility and

  • Culture ministry: Take Tuol Sleng photos down, or else

    The Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts has told Irish photographer Matt Loughrey to take down the photos of Khmer Rouge victims at Tuol Sleng Genocidal Museum which he allegedly colourised and altered to show them smiling. The ministry said Loughrey's work is unacceptable, affecting