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BWA: No link between sudden deaths and water supply

MARIA BRADSHAW, [email protected]

BWA: No link between sudden deaths and water supply

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That was the message from Barbados Water Authority’s communications specialist Joy-Ann Haigh this morning following the circulation on social media of a post which linked the recent number of people who collapsed and died to “lead in their body allegedly to be from the new water meters.”

“That is absolutely not true,” said Haigh, who added that a press conference will be held tomorrow where evidence will be presented by officials from the Ministry of Health, the Environmental Protection Department, manufacturers of the meters and a technologist from the BWA.

“They will be addressing this malicious rumour that has been circulating on social media and we will be bringing scientific proof  to the public, Haigh announced, adding that Barbados’ water quality is tested on a continuous basis and though it contains various elements like any other water, meets world health standards.

“It is regrettable that someone took to social media to spread such a vicious rumour that surely has planted fear into the hearts of the Barbadian public. Barbadians are more sensible than this; they know that you have to come with proof with these types of things. We want them not to panic and to trust that each time they turn on that tap every measure has been taken to ensure the safety and quality of the water that we distribute.

In relation to a video which was also being widely shared showing a young man throwing away water and complaining that it was killing people, Haigh said it appeared to be a spin-off from the original post. “The youngster is obviously reacting to the post and we are asking Barbadians not to share these untruths,” she said.

Haigh pointed out that with Crop Over in season and several tourists already on the island, such rumours could make people doubtful about the quality of our water.

“We are nowhere near where Flint (Michigan) was or is. We are even better than what the WHO has requested and we will bring that proof. Lead is linked to neurological problems – not I’m going to drop dead today. Barbadians can go and Google it. Lead does not lead to instant death of individuals.  That alone should tell Barbadians that this is rubbish,” she stressed. (MB)