Household Well Water Education Program Held
Posted on Jul 24th, 2022
Photo Linda Wright
Program speaker John Smith advised having private water wells tested annually and screened for contaminants, including total coliform bacteria, E. coli, nitrate-nitrogen and salinity.
A group of San Bernard River residents became “well informed” at the Texas Well Owners Network (TWON) Education Program held on Sat Jul 23rd at the FOR Community Center. Attendees had taken advantage of the opportunity to have their well water tested for free paid for by Friends of the River San Bernard.
Prior to the TWON program, speaker John Smith, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service Program Specialist, had processed 50 private well water samples turned in earlier and provided interpretation of the results of those tests along with any corrective recommendations.
Presence of E. coli bacteria in water indicates that waste from humans or warm-blooded animals may have contaminated the water. Water contaminated with E. coli is more likely to also have pathogens present that can cause diarrhea, cramps, nausea or other symptoms.
The presence of nitrate-nitrogen in well water is also a concern. Water with nitrate-nitrogen at levels of 10 parts per million is considered unsafe for human consumption. These nitrate levels can disrupt the ability of blood to carry oxygen throughout the body, resulting in a condition called methemoglobinemia,” Smith said. “Infants less than 6 months of age and young livestock are most susceptible.”
Salinity, as measured by total dissolved solids was also determined. Water with high levels may leave deposits and have a salty taste. Using water with high levels for irrigation may damage soil or plants.
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