​​​​​​​Frequently Asked Questions About COVID-19 and Water Supply


Can I get COVID-19 virus by drinking water?

The novel coronavirus disease, COVID-19, does not present a threat to the safety of SCWA’s treated water supplies. SCWA’s Treatment process removes and kills viruses, including coronaviruses, as well as bacteria and other pathogens. Ongoing monitoring demonstrates that SCWA’s treated water meets or surpasses all federal and state drinking water standards and regulations, which require removal at least 99.99% of viruses. COVID-19 is transmitted person-to-person, not through water, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Can SCWA continue treating and delivering water if COVID-19 spreads?

SCWA maintains an extensive system of wells, water treatment plants and pipelines to deliver safe and reliable water supplies to our customers. This system includes multiple layers of redundancy to ensure continued deliveries, even during a disruption. SCWA also maintains plans and systems for emergency response and business continuity to guide operations, including responding to pandemic outbreaks.

To address concerns about COVID-19, SCWA has taken several steps to protect the health of its employees, minimize potential exposure and avoid widespread impacts to our workforce. SCWA has also ensured it has the necessary backup equipment, supplies and treatment chemicals in the event of disruptions to the supply chain for these items.

So why are people stockpiling bottled water?

General emergency preparedness encourages a two-week supply of bottled water in the event of a supply disruption. While other emergencies may necessitate backup water sources, water supplies are not a concern in this particular situation. 

Where can I learn more about COVID-19 and water?

Frequently Asked Questions from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Coronavirus and Drinking Water and Wastewater
California Department of Public Health - COVID-19
Center for Disease Control - COVID-19
What to do if you become sick with COVID-19

 County Departments: What's Open/Closed/Modified​