Fluoride Action Network

Quality and Safety of Rural Community Drinking Water Sources in Guto Gida District, Oromia, Ethiopia

Source: Journal of Environmental and Public Health; Article ID 5568375. | May 25th, 2021
Location: Ethiopia


The quality of drinking water has always been a major public health concern, especially in developing countries where access to improved water supply and sanitation is very low. This study aimed to assess the bacteriological and physicochemical quality of rural community drinking water sources in the Guto Gida district. A cross-sectional study was conducted in selected rural areas of the district from January to June 2016. Water samples were collected from four types of sources (protected dug well, open dug well, protected spring, and open spring) found in 8 locations of the study area. The membrane filtration technique was employed to determine the total coliform and faecal coliform load of the samples. The physicochemical characteristics such as total dissolved solid (TDS), pH, electrical conductivity (EC), turbidity, temperature, color, iron, manganese, lead, fluoride, zinc, sulphate, nitrate, and phosphate were analyzed following the American Public Health Association and WHO standard protocols. Our results revealed that 90.6% and 87.5% of water samples were positive for total coliform and faecal coliform, respectively. Thus, the majority of the studied water sources could be classified as polluted with respect to coliform load. Our results also have shown that most of the water sources showed marginally tolerable quality with respect to color, EC, TDS, turbidity, nitrate, sulphate, and phosphate. However, the protected sources had poor quality in zinc, lead, iron, manganese, and pH with values above the permissible levels. Thus, the drinking water source quality of the study areas requires appropriate interventions such as improving the existing water source infrastructure and access to sanitation services.


Fluoride is among the chemical parameters with a serious public health concern. The concentrations of fluoride recorded in water samples from three sites of unprotected wells were over the standard set by WHO (1.5?mg/L). These are S1, S2, and D2 with fluoride concentrations of 2.5, 2.0, and 1.87?mg/L, respectively (Tables 710). Similarly, water samples from three unprotected springs of various sites contained fluoride concentrations more than the maximum tolerable limit set by both WHO and ES (Tables 710). The sites are D1, K1, and J1 with fluoride concentrations of 3.81, 2.01, and 1.27?mg/L, respectively (Tables 710). Fluoride concentrations above permissible levels were detected in some protected wells and protected springs (Tables 710).

*Read full-text article online at https://doi.org/10.1155/2021/5568375