Water Analysis

Providing clean, healthy, drinkable water is AquaGib’s bread and butter. It’s our job; so we take it very seriously. In fact, we take our water so seriously that we want to share the process with you, just to give you that extra peace of mind.

All water produced at our Desalination Plants is treated and re-mineralised. The product water is analysed for chemical content and bacterial purity to ensure that it complies with the provisions of the Gibraltar Public Health Act, which incorporates the EU Directive 98/83 of 3rd November 1998 regulating the quality of water to be used for dietetic purposes. The treated water is then pumped from the Plant to the Waterworks where it is either directed to the service reservoirs or to the storage reservoirs.

When a storage reservoir is full, the water is again analysed for chemical content and bacterial purity. Once the water is found to comply with our high standards it is placed in reserve storage until it is pumped to the service reservoirs. In order to ensure the bacteriological quality of the water remains within the required standard, the product water receives residual chlorination as it leaves the plant and also on transfer from storage to service reservoirs.

Gibraltar’s water distribution system is divided into districts, supplied with water from the service reservoirs. The water arriving at each district is sampled regularly and analysed to ensure that, when it reaches the consumer, it is still wholesome and complies with EU Directives. Further independent checks are carried out by the Environmental Health Department.


Analysis Results:

Your analysis and what it all means

Standards are in accordance with the Public Health Water Rules 1994. This includes the requirements of European Directive 98/83/EC.

The Test & What It Means Standard Units
Microbiological Parameters
E. Coli Groups of bacteria indicating possible faecal contamination of water supplies. Occurrence of these organisms is always immediately investigated. 0 per 100 ml
Enterococci Groups of bacteria indicating possible faecal contamination of water supplies. Occurrence of these organisms is always immediately investigated. 0 per 100 ml
Chemical Parameters
Antimony Antimony is toxic and is not present in water sources. Trace concentrations in drinking, water, which are not of any significance to health, can be derived from brass fittings and joint solders. 5 µgSb/l
Arsenic Very low levels appear naturally. 10 µgAs/l
Benzene Can be introduced into water by industrial effluents and industrial pollution. 1 µg/l
Benzo (a) pyrene (Benzo 3,4 pyrene) This is a PAH, as it is recognised as being of a greater health significance it has an additional specific standard. 1 µg/l
Boron Occurs naturally. 1 mgB/l
Bromate Can be formed in the disinfection process of water. 10 µgBrO3/l
Cadmium Very low levels appear naturally. 5 µgCd/l
Chromium Very low levels appear naturally. 50 µgCr/l
Copper Presence is largely due to influence of domestic plumbing systems. 2 mgCu/l
Cyanide Very low levels appear naturally. 50 µgCN/l
1,2 Dichloroethane Can enter surface water from industrial effluents related to chemical industries. 3 µg/l
Epichlorohydrin Used in industry in the manufacture of glycerol, unmodified epoxy resins and water treatment resins. 0.1 µg/l
Fluoride Occurs naturally. 1.5 mg/l
Lead Presence is largely due to influence of domestic plumbing systems. Mains water contain little or no lead. 10 µgPb/l
Mercury Very low levels appear naturally. 1 µgHg/l
Nickel Presence is largely derived from protective coatings on taps and fittings. 20 µgNi/l
Nitrate Occurs naturally from both mineral or soil processes and from agricultural activity. 50 mgNO3 /l
Nitrite May be associated with ammonia or nitrate in river water. 0.5 MgNO2/l
Pesticides Many water sources contain traces of pesticide residues as a result of agricultural and non agricultural use of pesticides on crops. 0.1 µg/l
Pesticides Total This is the sum of all the individual pesticides detected in any one sampling occasion. 0.5 µg/l
Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH) PAHs are associated with fossil fuels, if found in mains water they often originate from coal tar linings in old mains. 0.1 µg/l
Selenium This is an essential trace element. Foodstuffs such as cereal, meat and fish are the principle source in the general population. 10 µg/l
Tetrachloroethene and Trichloroethene Chlorinated solvents, which are used in industry and in dry cleaning processes. They are widespread in the environment and are found in trace amounts in water. Combined Standard of 10 µg/l
Trihalomethanes Total (THMs) Formed when chlorine is added to water as a disinfectant and reacts with organic substances. 100 µg/l
Vinyl Chloride May occur in migration from UPVC pipes. Controlled by product formulation. 0.5 µg/l
Indicator Parameters
Aluminium Is naturally present in most water sources. 200 µg/l
Ammonium Is naturally present in most water sources. 0.5 mg/l as NH4
Chloride In association with sodium it occurs naturally in water resources. Very high levels are present in seawater and are removed by treatment through desalination. 250 mg/l
Colour Occurs naturally in water. Acceptable to consumers and no abnormal change.
Conductivity A measure of the dissolved mineral content of the water 2500 µS cm-1
Hydrogen ion concentration (pH) Is controlled at treatment works to prevent corrosion of pipes and fittings. ≥ 6.5, and ≤ 9.5 pH units
Iron Occurs naturally. Some mains are made from cast iron and may corrode with time to give the water a rust coloured appearance, which while undesirable is not a health hazard. 200 µg/l
Manganese Naturally occurring as a result of passage of water through ground. 50 µg/l
Odour As well as chemical tests we compare the sample with one, which is free of smell. Acceptable to consumers and no abnormal change.
Oxidisability Provides a measure of the organic content. This is an alternative measure to TOC 5 mg/l
Sulphate Naturally occurring as a result of passage of water through ground. 250 mg/l
Sodium Naturally occurring as a result of passage of water through ground. 200 mg/l
Taste As well as chemical tests we compare the sample with one, which is free of smell. Acceptable to consumers and no abnormal change.
Coliform This bacteria indicates that the water may be contaminated. In most cases this is from the tap itself and may be present due to normal domestic use. We recommend that taps including the inside of the spout be regularly cleaned. Occurrence of the organism is always immediately investigated. 0 Per 100 ml
Total Organic Carbon Provides a measure of the organic content. The concentrations present in water do not present any risk to health. No abnormal change
Turbidity This is the clarity of the water, which can be affected by minute air bubbles or finely suspended particles. If you allow a glass of water to stand for a few minutes it will normally clear. Acceptable to consumers and no abnormal change.