Utilities Say Public Can't Handle the Truth About Drugs in Water

March 26, 2008

"When water providers find pharmaceuticals in drinking water, they rarely tell the public," the Associated Press reported March 14, 2008.

The story was part of an investigative series that found drugs in the water of many U.S. cities. The series got major coverage in many of them.

"There are plenty of reasons offered for the secrecy: concerns about national security, fears of panic, a feeling that the public will not understand - even confidentiality agreements," the AP reported.

Elaine Archibald, executive director of California Urban Water Agencies, told the AP many customers "don't know how to interpret the information. They hear something has been detected in source water and drinking water, and that's cause for alarm - just because it's there."