Introduction: Due to lack of treated water supply in major cities and settlements in Anambra state, Nigeria, majority of the population obtain potable water directly from boreholes, streams, sachet, harvested rain, and well water sources. Leadâ€‘laden potable water may be a major cause of mortality and morbidity in Anambra state, Nigeria.
Objective: This study was conducted to determine the presence of lead in potable water sources in Anambra state, Nigeria.
Materials and Methods: Water samples were systematically collected from 81 water sampling sites in different senatorial zones of the state. Lead was estimated in the water samples using Varian AA240 atomic absorption spectrophotometer.
Results: The mean levels of lead in the water samples in all the senatorial zones of the state were higher than the maximum contaminant limit (0.01 mg/L) set by the World Health Organization (WHO). The mean level of lead in harvested rain, sachet, and stream waters (0.34 ± 0.23, 0.37 ± 0.08, and 0.23 ± 0.06 mg/L, respectively) was higher in Anambra South senatorial zone compared to the WHO maximum contaminant limit. Furthermore, Anambra South has higher (P < 0.001) mean lead level compared to the North and Central senatorial zones.
Conclusion: This study reveals significantly high lead levels in potable water sources in Anambra state, Nigeria. The water samples should be well treated to remove this harmful toxic heavy metal which is very dangerous to health.
Keywords: Anambra state, lead, Nigeria, potable water.
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