What is the Water Quality in Dothan, Alabama?
Compared to other US cities, Dothan water quality ranks in the high range for contamination excluding Lead.
Most of their 35 contaminants have cancer-causing attributes.
- Arsenic is at very high levels: 18x health guidelines.
- Haloacetic acids (HAA5) are at high levels: 6x health guidelines.
- Haloacetic acids (HAA9) are at high levels: 20x health guidelines.
- These are both byproducts of the chlorine treatment process most water supplies go through.
Let’s look closer at what’s in Dothan water.
What’s in Dothan water?
Here are the top 5 chemical compounds in your water and what health issues they can potentially cause:
- Arsenic – Potential effect: Cancer
- Hexavalent Chromium – Potential effect: Cancer
- Haloacetic acids (HAA5 and HAA9) – Potential effect: Cancer
- Radium – Potential effect: Cancer
- Total trihalomethanes – Potential effect: Cancer
These are five of the 35 contaminants analyzed by the Environmental Working Group (ewg.org).
8 of these contaminants are rated as exceeding EWG Health Guidelines.
Does Dothan have Lead contamination?
Yes, Dothan has lead in its water. The most recent Lead samples collected in 2019 showed concentrations up to 4.9 parts per billion (ppb).
The legal limit for lead is 15 parts per billion. Being well-below this level is a good thing.
- Concentrations between 3.8 ppb and 15 ppb put a formula-fed baby at risk of elevated blood lead levels. Read more about the symptoms of Lead in water.
There is no safe level of lead for humans.
- The good news is that 99.99% of the lead can be removed.
See the What Can You Do? section below to learn how to filter out contaminants.
Where does Dothan’s water come from?
Dothan’s water comes from the Upper Omusee Creek watershed.
One of the four EPA assessed water sources in the Upper Omusee Creek watershed is in Impaired condition. This is Cedar Creek.
Ideally, a water source would be rated in Good condition. Omusee Creek and two sections of Poplar Spring Branch are in Good condition.
Whether a water source is in Impaired or Good condition refers to the quality of these uses:
- Drinking Water
- Aquatic Life
- Fish and Shellfish Consumption
Learn more from How’s My Waterway
See below for what you can do to improve Dothan’s water.
What Can You Do?
Information about water quality in Dothan can be surprising.
But there are things you can do in your home to clean up your water.
To Remove Lead and Other Contaminants In Your Home:
There is one solution that beats Brita, PUR, and expensive whole house systems.
- It costs less per gallon.
- Needs fewer filter changes.
- And it doesn’t make your water taste weird.
- Use Berkey filters with activated carbon to filter out at least 82% of contaminants in your drinking water.
- To filter out 32 of the 35 contaminants (91.4%), consider a Reverse Osmosis whole house water filtration system for your home.
- These are more expensive than pitchers to purchase, but can be more effective.
- They have the benefit of filtering out heavy hitters like:
- Barium – toxicity
- Benzene – toxicology
- Dieldrin – insecticide linked to Parkinson’s, breast cancer, and immune, reproductive, and nervous system damage. (Source)
- Haloacetic acids – chlorination byproduct*
- Hexavalent chromium
- Total trihalomethanes – byproduct of chlorination*
- Xylenes – health and safety
*Chlorination is an effective method of disinfecting/treating drinking water. You can then use a water filter to reduce the effects of chlorination byproducts to get the safest, cleanest water possible.
In Your Community:
Contact your local government officials and put pressure on them to invest in cleaner waterways and upgraded city water filtration and treatment.
Go to: http://www.dothan.org/ to find contact information for your local officials.