Frequently Asked Questions: Water Quality After Fires
Is our water safe to drink?
Yes, our water is safe to drink. We know this because we routinely sample water in our systems to confirm that it meets all state and federal drinking water standards. Samples taken during the fire and since have continued to meet all drinking water standards. Historically, we’ve met or surpassed all water quality standards; our water quality reports are available online at www.hawaiiwaterservice.com/waterquality. At Hawaii Water Service, we are committed to delivering safe, clean drinking water, 24 hours per day, seven days per week, 365 days per year.
Where does Hawaii Water Service get its water from for customers?
Our water supply comes from groundwater in areas where there were no fires. In those areas, our reservoirs are enclosed, meaning water is not exposed to open air. Our nearest water system was over two miles away, upwind, from the Lahaina Fire.
Is water unsafe to drink after a fire?
After a major fire, the main potential source of contamination for drinking water systems is from PVC distribution lines in areas that have burned. Our water distribution lines are not made of PVC; they’re made of ductile iron or transite. Additionally, our lines were not in areas that burned.
Are you doing any other sampling to make sure our water is safe?
Yes. Although we know that our water meets all state and federal drinking water standards, out of an abundance of caution, we are conducting additional testing for volatile organic compounds (VOCs), chemicals that evaporate easily and can enter the atmosphere or water.
How will we know if our water ever becomes unsafe to drink?
We immediately notify our customers about water quality issues in accordance with state and federal regulations. Depending on the situation, we will notify customers in person, by phone/text, and by e-mail. We also post all water quality alerts and annual reports on this web site.