Don’t drink the well water. That might well be the warning notice left by Hurricane Florence, according to the News Observer.
Contamination of private water wells in North Carolina has spiked in the aftermath of the storm, whose flood waters spread raw sewage, farm animal waste and the overflow from septic systems across parts of the state, according to data from N.C. Department of Health and Human Services.
Because private wells are largely unregulated in North Carolina, there is no comprehensive data available on the levels of contamination caused by hurricane flooding. But scattered information from free testing provided by the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services suggests that thousands of homeowners could be unwittingly using contaminated water for drinking, cooking and bathing.
The National Ground Water Association estimates that 332,798 private wells in North Carolina were exposed to heavy rains or are located in counties declared disaster areas from the hurricane. About 2.4 million people in the state get their drinking water from wells in their yards, the fifth highest total in the nation, according a 2018 report by the U.S. Geological Survey.
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