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Drinking water in South Africa

DDrinking water in South Africa is safe to drink and cook with when taken from taps in urban areas. Not all tap water in rural areas is safe for consumption, so it is advised you take precautions if necessary. Some rural areas make use of borehole systems which source found water and store them in containers before being purified by the water system connected to your tap. 

The Department of Water Affairs and Forestry maintains that South Africa’s national standard of water quality can be compared to that of the World Health Organisation standards.

According to statistics South Africa approximately 89, 4% if South African households have access to piped water. On a national level; 62 % of the household rated the quality of water- related services they received as “good”. The maintenance of clean water is provided by locally- based water service authorities, which regularly monitor the quality of drinking water in South Africa. These authorities are also rated by the department according to the Blue Drop Certification System. Raw water undergoes an extensive purification process at Rand Water (water sanitation hub) that ensures that citizens receive water that is free of harmful micro-organisms and contaminants. As a precaution avoid drinking water from streams and rivers, especially in areas where there is human habitation as they may carry water-borne diseases.

Should you find yourself in an unlikely position of not having clean water on hand, you can disinfect the water yourself by boiling it for a maximum of 10 minutes.  Alternatively, you can add a teaspoon of bleach per 25 litres or a teaspoon of chlorine granules per 200l. In both the latter cases, allow the water to stand for 2 hours. The survivalist method is to expose the water to direct sunlight for at least 6 hours in a transparent container with a small airspace, shaking after filling and every hour after that.

For on-the-go situations, you could always grab bottled water at a supermarket or garage. Bottled water is available from a number of brands, some of them well-known international names. Your choice includes still and sparkling waters and a range of fruit flavoured variants.  

South Africa on social media

Today we launch #BakkieStories, following a trio of UK celebrities on the ultimate South African road trip! 🇿🇦 Join us as we take TV presenter @mayajama, Instagram sensation @aliceliveing and travel blogger @saunderscb on an unbelievable 10 day journey through South Africa from Johannesburg to Cape Town. Follow the hashtag #BakkieStories or visit our website (link in our profile) to learn more.

Jo’Burg in 60 seconds! Check out today’s Instagram Stories to see the full video. 🇿🇦👍🏼 #MeetSouthAfrica #Johannesburg

"No password, no entry." Xena takes her job of park keeper very seriously! 😉 This pride of lions was spotted at Kruger National park by photographer @leo.bodgies. #WowSouthAfrica

We are in South Africa with @mayajama @aliceliveing and @saunderscb for an epic road trip! 🇿🇦 Tune in next week as we drive from Johannesburg to Cape Town. 🇿🇦 There’ll be some awesome food and wine, some crazy extreme bungee stuff, some surfing, and lots and lots of sharks!! And we’re doing it all in a bakkie, (which is what the locals call a pick-up truck.) Come and meet South Africa with us, and check out our #BakkieStories!

A weekend coffee from Cape Town's Counter Culture cafe. ☕️ (P.S. Ask for 'The Swan' for some impressive latte art!)

Road trip lovers will enjoy the legendary and notoriously hair-raising Sani Pass. Located in South Africa's Kwa Zulu-Natal province, the pass climbs to an altitude of 2,876m above sea level! Best tackled in 4x4's the views from this altitude are nothing less than awe-inspiring! 💚 Photo by @thelawry.

Mastering the art of the new trunk is harder than it looks! 🐘 #WowSouthAfrica Video by @rosscouperphoto.

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