Why this story matters:
A week before Christmas, about 5,000 people had to stop drinking from the tap due to high concentration of a pesticide called atrazine in the water.
What was it doing there? No one knows. People are frightened because they live in an area considered to be the biggest water source in Slovakia. In addition, the officials are unable to assess how long the pesticide was in the drinking water because, in November 2017, the water providers examined their products for this specific pesticide for the first time. Some of experts suspect that people have been drinking it for years.
Slovakia, proud of its high-quality water, has propagated drinking from the tap in numerous media campaigns. Now, it turns out that some people should switch to bottles again.
Details from the story:
- The following villages no longer have clean drinking water: Trstená na Ostrove, Baka, Jurová, Holice, Lúč na Ostrove, Blatná na Ostrove.
- The ban on drinking from the tap has been in place for three weeks already. There is a tank that provides water to the villages twice a day. During the holidays, people used gallons of water.
- The Ministry of the Environment is checking if the agro-companies operating near the water source are using the dangerous pesticide.
- Atrazine was banned by the EU in 2004.