Water safe to drink despite smell: Durham Region

Durham Region had issued a statement assuring residents the drinking water is safe for consumption despite “possible earthy or musty odours”.

“Taste and odour episodes are caused by seasonal biological changes in Lake Ontario and typically occur in the late summer or early fall,” reads the regional statement.

According to the Region, it is difficult to predict when conditions will return to normal as taste and odour episodes generally fade away after the lake water temperatures decrease.

“Taste and odour episodes are caused by seasonal biological changes in Lake Ontario, especially during hot weather,” continues the Region’s statement.

“Geosmin and 2-Methylisoborneol (MIB)—naturally occurring compounds in Lake Ontario and Lake Simcoe—are not harmful to public health and the Region’s water quality is not otherwise affected.”

Laboratory testing of both the raw and treated water confirms the municipal water meets all Ontario Drinking Water Quality Management Standards as set by the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, according to the Region.

“To reduce the taste and odour in the drinking water residents can refrigerate a jug of water, or add ice cubes and a few drops of lemon juice to the water,” concludes the Region’s statement.

For more information about the municipal water supply systems in Durham Region, visit durham.ca/water. Water Quality Reports are available online at durham.ca.

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