Surface and ground water resources in urban areas are at risk of contamination from many human activities such as oil spills due to improper location of fuel filling stations and auto mobile repair workshops in fast developing cities in third world countries like Cameroon. The study was aimed at determining the physicochemical properties of surface water resources around fuel filling stations and auto-mobile repair workshops in the Bamenda city, North West Region of Cameroon. Ten water samples were collected from surface water sources around two fuel filling stations and three auto-mobile repair workshops. The pH, temperature and electrical conductivity were tested using a Bluelab pH meter, Mercury in glass thermometer, and a WTW LF 91 meter, respectively. The total hardness of water was measured using EDTA titrimetric method; alkalinity was determined using titrimetric method with 0.01 M concentration of HCl as titrant while the concentrations of calcium, magnesium and chlorine were measured using complexometric titration. Results showed that the pH values ranged from 5.62 to 6.24 for auto-mobile repair workshops and 6.15 to 6.70 for fuel filling stations which were below the World Health Organization (WHO) range (6.5 to 8.5) recommended for potable water. Other physicochemical parameters like electrical conductivity, water hardness, temperature and alkalinity were all within WHO recommended range. Ca+ and Mg2+ concentration was within limits while Cl was above WHO recommended limits. The study concludes that the amount of waste oil generated at fuel filling stations and auto mobile repair workshops is significant to cause negative effects on the environment in the Bamenda city, North West Region of Cameroon.
Key words: Fuel filling stations, auto-mobile repair workshops, physicochemical properties, WHO limits.
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