There’s Something in the Water

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By Allison Gilmore, Register Contributor

Two weeks ago, the UNC VS Notre Dame game was moved to Sunday, February 5th, which may have seemed exciting for the locals, but turned out to be for more menacing reasons than they thought. There was something in the water in the Chapel Hill/Carrboro are, and no, I do not mean this figuratively. There was a broken water main break and an overfeeding of fluoride on the morning of Friday, February 3rd, causing classes to cancel, restaurants to shut down, and the highly anticipated basketball game to be postponed.

Recent reports say that it was mainly due to poor installation and how the pipe was laid 44 years ago. The unsafe water only lasted the weekend, but people frantically rushed to stores, clearing every aisle of water. 80,000 residents were forced to either quickly buy water or other beverages or even leave the area and stay with nearby relative and friends.

A water crisis in North Carolina may not seem like a big deal to some, but it is in fact a growing problem for America. Yes, this was just a simple mishap, but what about the problems associated with Flint, Michigan? I was born and raised in Saint Louis, Missouri, a city that is considered to have some of the safest and best tasting tap water in the country.

The first time I ever experienced unsafe water was when I traveled to Costa Rica. There were signs everywhere that read, “Do not drink the tap water.” Even in the shower it was written in bold “do not open your mouth,” which was quite unnerving to me. I have come across bad tasting tap water in places like Florida but never unsafe water. Residents were told not to drink or use the water for any purposes.

With a water crisis like this hitting nearly 50 miles from our campus, there should be some sort of concern. N.C. A&T students should be more aware of the water we use here as well as surrounding areas. You never know when something like this could hit home, so always be prepared. Keep bottled water and non-perishable foods in your room or make contact with friends and/or relatives who live nearby, so you’ll have somewhere to go in case of emergencies such as a water crisis.