MWSS says tap water clean, free from COVID-19
MANILA, Philippines – The water being delivered to households in Metro Manila and its neighboring towns are clean and guaranteed to be free from bacterias and viruses like the latest coronavirus strain, the Manila Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) assured on Monday.
MWSS’ Regulatory Office (RO) clarified that both the water supplied to houses and the wastewater being discharged from their cleaning facilities are both being disinfected.
“The water supply maintained in our distribution systems up to the customers’ taps has been disinfected with chlorine, as prescribed by the Philippine National Standard for Drinking Water (PNSDW) set by the Department of Health (DOH). Our water is therefore free from bacteria and viruses (including the COVID-19 virus) and is safe for domestic consumption,” Chief Regulator Patrick Ty said.
“The wastewater discharged from our Sewage and/or Septage Treatment Plants (STPs) into our receiving water bodies has also been disinfected with chlorine; in accordance with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Administrative Order 2016-08 or the “Water Quality Guidelines and General Effluent Standards,” he added.
Ty said that MWSS-RO’s statement came amid speculations that the water from concessionaires may be carrying the COVID-19, as cases continued to pile up in the Philippines.
MWSS oversees the supply of water to Metro Manila, which is divided into two sectors under the concession agreement: the east side belonging to Manila Water, and the west side being serviced by Maynilad.
As of Monday, Metro Manila, Luzon, and other areas are still under an enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) to prevent COVID-19 from further spreading. The Department of Health said that that there are now 1,546 patients infected with COVID-19, 78 of which have already died while at least 42 have recovered.
Worldwide, 713,258 persons have been confirmed to contracted the latest coronavirus strain, while 33,658 have died from the disease and 148,707 have recovered from it.
Ty assured that it is the World Health Organization that assured that disinfecting with chlorine would be enough to neutralize viruses, including the SARS-COV-2 strain that causes COVID-19.
“In a technical brief on water, sanitation, hygiene, and waste management for the COVID-19 virus released by the World Health Organization (WHO) on 19 March 2020; the WHO maintained that chlorine disinfection should inactivate the COVID-19 virus,” Ty explained.
“The MWSS RO assures the public that it is continuously and rigorously monitoring the quality of our water and wastewater to protect the health and safety of its consumers, as well as the environment,” he added.
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