CLEARFIELD – The weather’s hot and there is little that is more natural for kids than to play in the sprinklers.
But that can be dangerous, particularly if the water is secondary water, according to Davis County Health Department officials.
They are warning residents not to drink untreated water.
“The majority of Utahns understand they shouldn’t drink untreated water from rivers, reservoirs and lakes, but I’m concerned that many people, especially children, don’t realize that secondary tap water isn’t treated either, said Davis County Health Department director Lewis Garrett. “It, too, can be a source of bacteria and disease when used inappropriately.”
Sources of untreated water include secondary water used to irrigate lawns, gardens and farms.
“Secondary water is less expensive for its intended purpose of irrigation since it’s left untreated,” said Dave Spence, director of the Environmental Health Services Division of the health department. “Even without being treated, secondary water is harmless to vegetation and animals when used correctly.”
People are encouraged to wash with soap and water from a culinary source after coming in contact with secondary water, Spence said.
Adults should keep children from playing in sprinklers or wading pools if secondary water is used.
“We really hope adults will explain to their children about the different water sources around their home and that secondary water isn’t for drinking or playing in,” Spence said.
He suggests residents paint their outdoor secondary water taps red to distinguish them from the outdoor culinary water facets.
“That makes it easy for others to recognize which tap has secondary water so there’s no mistake when using it,” he said.
For more information about using untreated water, contact the health department’s Environmental Health Services Division at 801-525-5100.