Your water might be contaminated (unsafe to use) with harmful bacteria or chemicals if:
Wells in pits or basements can also flood or be contaminated. When flooding happens, your well needs to be checked. Even if your well looks fine, bacteria and chemicals can still get in.
If your well has flooded,
don’t use the water:
Floodwaters can carry waste (such as wood, rocks, metal) that can damage the well casing, electrical parts, and the pump.
When the floodwaters have gone down, call a licensed water-well contractor to check your well system. The pump (including valves and gears) might need to be cleaned to remove any soil or sand.
Don’t turn on the pump until a qualified electrician or a licensed water-well contractor checks the wiring system. You could damage the well and pump or even get electrocuted (harmed by electric shock).
After flooding, your well and the whole plumbing system connected to it need to be
shock chlorinated. This is a way to kill harmful bacteria.
Before you use your well again, have the
water tested for bacteria. You can get sample bottles and testing instructions from an Alberta Health Services Environmental Public Health office. After testing, they will tell you if your water is safe to use. If you think your well has been contaminated with chemicals, contact Environmental Public Health for testing.
When the flood is over and the well is safe again, check with a licensed water-well contractor or Environmental Public Health to learn how to protect your well from future floods. This may include:
Current as of: February 18, 2021
Author: Environmental Public Health, Alberta Health Services
This material is not a substitute for the advice of a qualified health professional. This material is intended for general information only and is provided on an "as is", "where is" basis. Although reasonable efforts were made to confirm the accuracy of the information, Alberta Health Services does not make any representation or warranty, express, implied or statutory, as to the accuracy, reliability, completeness, applicability or fitness for a particular purpose of such information. Alberta Health Services expressly disclaims all liability for the use of these materials, and for any claims, actions, demands or suits arising from such use.