An assessment of the microbiological composition of the water distribution system in Chinhoyi town, Zimbabwe.

Author: Chitura, Lisa

The present study was conducted to assess the microbiological composition of the water distribution system of Chinhoyi town. Drinking water was used to determine the microbiological content of the distribution system. For the purpose of this study this document does not address the primary treatment of the water as it assumes the systems to be in compliance with the recommended guidelines of the World Health Organisation as well as the Standards association of Zimbabwe. . The samples of drinking water were subjected to microbial tests using total bacteria, total coliform and total E. coli as the main parameters to determine the composition of the water within the system. A total of 12 drinking water samples were collected from 12 different sampling points from all the suburbs in the town that had running tap water. Samples were collected before 10am once a month from taps that are connected to the water distribution system that is connected to the local water works station. The tap where sterilized to eliminate the possible contamination risk at the sample collection points. It was established that the drinking water violated the World Health organization standards as well as the local Standards Association of Zimbabwe. The samples contained contaminants in the form of total bacteria and total coliform showing that the distribution system was compromised. The study reveals that the drinking water quality of Chinhoyi town is not continuously safe for human consumption as the contaminants where found for two thirds of the year in a period of 12 months. The system requires a thorough assessment to examine to establish the source of contamination along the way from the treatment plant to the point of use.