You’re yanking my chain! Hong Kong residents drink flushing water due to pipe error

Just when you think the fresh water in Hong Kong’s residential buildings is completely unsafe… you’re proved totally right.

After weeks of revelations about unsafe levels of lead in drinking water at various Hong Kong public housing estates and schools, we learn that residents in Kwun Tong have been drinking water meant for flushing toilets. 

Apple Daily reported on Friday that a resident at Lee Hong House in Shun Lee Estate raised the alarm last week after drinking a glass of water that tasted decidedly salty.

On contacting the Housing Authority, he was eventually told that he had indeed consumed sea water meant for flushing the toilet.

The error apparently occurred due to a misconnection of pipes. 

Subsequently, the authority told all tenants that the supply of flushing water would be suspended, and floors 7-18 (60 percent of the building’s flats) that freshwater was also unavailable. Both supplies were resumed later the same day.

The Federation of Public Housing Estate says public confidence in the safety of Hong Kong drinking water is at an all time low. Ya think?

Just in case you’re still feeling confident, former Hong Kong Medical Association president Dr. Gabriel Choi Kin said the flushing water can contain E.coli and cause gastroenteritis and scurvy as it is not sanitised. 

We also hear it tastes like shit.
Photo: Rudolf Vlček

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