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Province Provides Free Testing for Private Water Supplies

Released on July 3, 2014

The province is offering free water testing to Saskatchewan residents with private drinking water sources that may be affected by flooding.

The Saskatchewan Disease Control Laboratory will provide free bacteriological testing for residents who are concerned about whether well or cistern water affected by flooding is safe to drink.

“This free testing can help residents affected by flooding make sure their drinking water is safe and free of waterborne disease,” Health Minister Dustin Duncan said.

The free water testing is available until this flood event has ended. Local health regions can provide residents with information on whether they are eligible for free testing, sample containers and payment exempt requisition forms. Information on how to deal with flooded private wells and a list of health region contact numbers is available at www.health.gov.sk.ca/flooded-private-wells-fact-sheet.

The Saskatchewan Water Security Agency also offers site assessments of flooded wells and cisterns, including testing of water used as a primary source of drinking water.

“Many areas across the province are dealing with flooding issues and we want to ensure everyone has access to safe drinking water,” Minister responsible for the Water Security Agency Scott Moe said.

If residents suspect that their private water source has been contaminated by flooding, they are advised to use an alternate water source such as bottled water.  People are encouraged to watch for signs of flooding that may cause contamination of their water.

Once flood water has receded, individuals should disinfect (shock chlorinate) their well or cistern and submit a water sample for bacteriological testing.  Information on shock chlorination and water quality is available at www.wsask.ca/FloodWatch

Public water supplies are tested routinely, and are being closely monitored in flood areas to ensure the water is safe.  Residents who use public drinking water sources can contact the owner/operator of their supply if they have any questions.

For updates and information on flood preparedness visit http://gr.gov.sk.ca/flood.

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For more information, contact:

Tyler McMurchy
Health
Regina
Phone: 306-787-4083
Email: tmcmurchy@health.gov.sk.ca

Patrick Boyle 
Water Security Agency
Moose Jaw
Phone: 306-694-8914
Email: Patrick.Boyle@wsask.ca

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