There’s water but it’s black

Black water from tap

A village in Seville has been seeing pitch-black water coming out of its taps for more than two weeks.

The public health department of the Junta de Andalucía has declared the water of Lora del Río, a town with a population of almost 20,000, unfit for human consumption. The problem has arisen, officials say, at least in part because of the low levels of water in the José Torán reservoir.

At the beginning of October, Fran Carrasco, a councillor in the Lora del Río town council, said: “The water situation in Lora del Río is unsustainable”, he posted on his social networks, accompanied by a video in which completely black water could be seen coming out of a tap.

Shortly afterwards, the public health officials declared the water of the entire municipality as unfit for human consumption after verifying that it exceeded the parametric value of manganese, reaching 388g/L, when the maximum is 80g/L.

Since then, the water of Lora del Río can neither be used for drinking nor as an ingredient for food preparation. The town council of has already distributed around 33,000 litres of bottled water to the residents and has provided three tankers of 25 cubic metres each with five fixed tanks throughout the town.

In addition to the distribution of water, the municipal government has assured that it is preparing a series of investments of around €200,000 to improve the water treatment plant. In addition, the supply network, 30 kilometres of asbestos cement pipes are to be replaced with PVC pipes, a multi-million euro project.

However, the high levels of manganese and the black sludge coming out of residents’ taps, will continue to be a problem while the water levels in the reservoir, which currently stand at around 15% of total capacity, remain so low.

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Written by

Kevin Fraser Park

Kevin was born in Scotland and worked in marketing, running his own businesses in UK, Italy and, for the last 8 years, here in Spain. He moved to the Costa del Sol in 2016 working initially in real estate. He has a passion for literature and particularly the English language which is how he got into writing.