Page 48 - Salem Magazine Spring 2015
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                                   Water Report
Microbiological Contaminants:
(1) Total Coliform. Coliforms are bacteria that are naturally present in the environment and are used as an indicator that other, potentially-harmful, bacteria may be present.
(2) Fecal coliform/E.Coli. Fecal coliforms and E. coli are bacteria whose presence indicates that the water may be contaminated with human or animal wastes. Microbes in these wastes can cause short-term effects, such as diarrhea, cramps, nausea, headaches, or other symptoms. They may pose a special health risk for infants, young children, and people with severely compromised immune systems.
(3) Turbidity. Turbidity has no health effects. However, turbidity can interfere with disinfection and provide a medium for microbial growth. Turbidity may indicate the presence of disease-causing organisms. These organisms include bacteria, viruses, and parasites that can cause symptoms such as nausea, cramps, diarrhea, and associated headaches.
(4) Cryptosporidium. Pathogenic protozoa that is widely distributed in nonpotable water supplies. This organism can cause gastrointestinal illness (e.g. diarrhea, vomiting, and cramps).
(5) Giardia lamblia. Pathogenic protozoa that is widely distributed in nonpotable water supplies. This organism can cause gastrointestinal illness (e.g. diarrhea, vomiting, and cramps).
Radioactive Contaminants:
(6) Beta/photon emitters. Certain minerals are radioactive and may emit forms of radiation known as photons and beta radiation. Some people who drink water containing beta and photon emitters in excess of the MCL over many years may have an increased risk of getting cancer.
(7) Alpha emitters. Certain minerals are radioactive and may emit a form of radiation known as alpha radiation. Some people who drink water containing alpha emitters in excess of the MCL over many years may have an increased risk of getting cancer.
(8) Combined Radium 226/228. Some people who drink water containing radium 226 or 228 in excess of the MCL over many years may have an increased risk of getting cancer.
Inorganic Contaminants:
(9) Antimony. Some people who drink water containing antimony well in excess of the MCL over many years could experience increases in blood cholesterol and decreases in blood sugar.
(10) Arsenic. Some people who drink water containing arsenic in excess of the MCL over many years could experience skin damage or problems with their circulatory system, and may have an increased risk of getting cancer.
(11) Aluminum. People at risk for health problems include dialysis patients. Symptoms of chronic aluminum exposure include softening of the bones and brain dysfunction.
(12) Barium. Some people who drink water containing barium in excess of the MCL over many years could experience an increase in their blood pressure.
(13) Beryllium. Some people who drink water containing beryllium well in excess of the MCL over many years could develop intestinal lesions.
(14) Cadmium. Some people who drink water containing cadmium in excess of the MCL over many years could experience kidney damage.
(15) Chromium. Some people who use water containing chromium well in excess of the MCL over many years could experience allergic dermatitis.
(16) Copper. Copper is an essential nutrient, but some people who drink water containing copper in excess
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of the action level over a relatively short amount of time could experience gastrointestinal distress. Some people who drink water containing copper in excess of the action level over many years could suffer liver or kidney damage. People with Wilson’s disease should consult their personal doctor.
Roanoke River
suffering from these conditions.
(28) Chlorine. Some people who use drinking water containing chlorine well in excess of EPA’s standard could experience irritating effects to their eyes and nose and stomach discomfort.
(29) Fluoride. Some people who drink water containing fluoride in excess of the MCL over many years could get bone disease, including pain and tenderness of the bones. Children may get mottled teeth.
(30) Cyanide. Nerve damage or thyroid problems.
(31) Mercury (inorganic). Some people who drink water containing inorganic mercury well in excess of the MCL over many years could experience kidney damage.
(32) Nitrate. Infants below the age of six months who drink water containing nitrate in excess of the MCL could become seriously ill and, if untreated, may die. Symptoms include shortness of breath and blue-baby syndrome.
(33) Orthophosphate. A commonly used corrosion inhibitor that is added to finished drinking water. Orthophosphate works by forming a protective coating inside of pipes in the distribution system and in customer homes to prevent lead from leaching into drinking water. It is approved for use in drinking water treatment by the USEPA, and certified by the National Sanitation Federation. It is not used at the City of Salem Water Plant.
(34) Selenium. Selenium is an essential nutrient. However, some people who drink water containing selenium in excess of the MCL over many years could experience hair or fingernail losses, numbness in fingers or toes, or problems with their circulation.
(35) Thallium. Some people who drink water containing thallium in excess of the MCL over many years could experience hair loss, changes in their blood, or problems with their kidneys, intestines, or liver.
(36) Hardness. Hardness does not pose a health risk and is not regulated by state or federal agencies. It often causes aesthetic problems, such as scaling on pipes and fixture; lowers detergent performance.
(37) Alkalinity. High alkalinity does not pose a health risk, but can cause aesthetic problems.
  SPRING 2015 | water.salemva.gov
(17) Silver. Since silver is not a health benefit for living organisms in any way, the body has a low capacity for absorbing it. Low amounts of ionic silver water intake are not harmful or life threatening in any way, but large intakes can prove to be extremely toxic. Water guidelines suggest an incredibly low amount of silver within drinking water because a high concentration of silver water can bond while boiling and create silver oxide. Silver water that contains silver nitrate can be even more harmful and cause dizziness, diarrhea, and vomiting.
(18) Chloride. Chlorides are not usually not harmful to people, however they can corrode metals and effect the taste of food products.
(19) Sulfate. Health concerns regarding sulfate in drinking water have been raised because of reports that diarrhea may be associated with the ingestion of water containing high levels of sulfate.
(20) pH. The U.S. E.P.A. does not regulate pH levels in drinking water, it is classified as a secondary water contaminant whose impact is considered aesthetic. (21) Total dissolved solids. Total dissolved solids can give water a murky appearance and detract from the taste quality of the water.
(22) Iron. Elevated iron levels in water can cause stains in plumbing, laundry, and cooking utensils, and can impart objectionable tastes and colors to food.
(23) Manganese. Elevated manganese levels in water can cause stains in plumbing, laundry, and cooking utensils. Upon exposure to air or other oxidants, manganese will usually precipitate black.
(24) Nickel. Nickel is not known to cause any health problems when people are exposed to levels above the MCL for relatively short periods of time
(25) Zinc. Harmful effects generally begin at levels 10-15 times higher than the amount needed for good health. Large doses taken by mouth even for a short time can cause stomach cramps, nausea, and vomiting. (26) Color. Color in drinking water is classified as a secondary water contaminant whose impact is considered aesthetic.
Synthetic organic contaminants including pesticides and herbicides:
(38) 2, 4-D. Some people who drink water containing the weed killer 2, 4-D well in excess of the MCL over many years could experience problems with their kidneys, liver, or adrenal glands.
(27) Sodium. An essential element required for normal body function including nerve impulse transmission, fluid regulation, and muscle contraction and relaxation. However, in excess amounts, sodium increases individual risk of hypertension, heart disease, and stroke. One of the chief sources of sodium is the consumption of salt; therefore salt restrictions are often recommended as a first-line of treatment for individuals
(39) 2, 4, 5-TP (Silvex). Some people who drink water containing silvex in excess of the MCL over many years could experience liver problems.
(40) Carbaryl. Carbaryl may reduce learning ability and aggravate viral diseases.



















































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