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Is your well water safe?

More than a million Georgians drink water from private wells. Many Pike County residents depend on well water for survival, yet only 3% of wells are tested for harmful bacteria each year. As many as 700,000 Georgians drink water contaminated with bacteria, according to the University of Georgia Agricultural and Environmental Services Laboratories. Ben Trotter started working as the Pike County Health Department environmental health county manager about eight months ago. He said water needs to be tested regularly and anytime work is done on the well. Many of the wells he’s tested have shown positive culture for unhealthy bacterias ‘“ including coliform and E. coli. ’I recommend people using well water get it tested at least once a year,’ he said. ‘When you use a source of water for drinking, it can become contaminated at any point so it’s a good idea to keep it checked. The most common test we do is the bacterial test and we get a lot of positive samples. Those can generally be cleared up by chlorinating the wells.’

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