Background: Globally, 1.1 billion people lack access to improved drinking water supply and drink water that is grossly contaminated. Hence, study of water treatment assumes utmost importance in order to ensure the safety of the water consumed especially in fast developing cities. This study would provide information of drinking water management practices in the study area. We studied the sources, the treatment and storage facilities of drinking water in households and assessed the free chlorine levels in the drinking water. Method: This community based cross sectional study was conducted in Mangalore - a city of Karnataka State in South India. Using convenience sampling, 100 households were visited in the area of Boloor. Information was collected regarding demographic profile, household drinking water sources, treatment and storage practices followed by testing for free chlorine in the drinking water using O-Toluidine. Results: Study population had high literacy rate and 83% had their main source of drinking water from municipality, 17% had private water source. Among these 6% households had bore wells, 10% had protected dug well. Overall 99% had improved source of drinking water. Sumps were present in 32% of the households. Of these 34.4 % cleaned it once a month. Boiling was found to be the preferred choice of water treatment; but 5% of the population (lower socio economic status) did not use any method to treat water in their households. Overall, 43% households drank water by pouring to glass from storage vessel, 34% dipped glass into vessel using hands, 23% had tap system and 84.2% of the households cleaned their storage vessel daily. O-Toluidine test showed no free chlorine in drinking water in any of the homes. Conclusion: Study population had access to improved water. However households lacked appropriate storage and handling practices of drinking water which needs to be evaluated further.
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