Soil bacteria detected in drinking water

Public Health Authority


Soil bacteria has been detected in water in several drinking water wells in Reykjavík, caused by recent rains and quick changes in air temperature, thawing and freezing in short time periods. The bacteria is not harmful to healthy people but the Reykjavík Health Department recommends that water should be boiled for vulnerable individuals. 

In light of the bacteria the Reykjavik Health Department recommends that drinking water in certain parts of the city should be boiled if consumers are vulnerable, for example individuals with poor immune systems, infants, elderly or people with underlying conditions. This applies to all parts of the city except Grafarvogur, Norðlingaholt, Grafarholt, Úlfarsárdalur, Kjalarnes and Mosfellsbær, but these districts get water from wells where samples have not exceeded the limit values.

It should be emphasized that for most people the water is good to drink directly from the tap and this situation is not expected to last for a long period of time.

The Reykjavík Health Department samples the drinking water two times a week to inspect its quality. In extreme weather conditions, after heavy rain and snow thawing samples are taken more often.

Drinking water in Reykjavík is normally not treated in any way and is extremely good in quality.