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Assessment of Tap Water Quality in Mobile Homes in the Eastern Coachella Valley, California

Authors: Thomas D. Hile,
Stephen G. Dunbar,
Nataly E. Garcia,
Ryan G. Sinclair

Publication: PLOS Water

Date: 2022

Very few studies have been undertaken on water quality from mobile homes, with most information coming from press and policy reports suggesting that people living in mobile homes in the US have poor water quality. Our goal was to evaluate resident exposure to microbes at the point of use of tap water sourced from the Oasis Mobile Homes Park (OMHP), using physico-chemical parameters, concentrations of target cultivatable microbes, and quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) analyses. In this study, we sampled 15 mobile homes (MHs) and found arsenic concentrations to be 4–8 times above the acceptable EPA standard of 10 ppm. Our qPCR demonstrated high concentrations of gene targets for Salmonella spp., L. monocytogenes, P. aeruginosa, C. jejuni, E. faecalis, and E. coli in one or more of our sampled mobile homes. Except for MH4, which had the highest concentration of L. monocytogenes and E. faecalis, all MHs had different predominant microorganisms. Based on the physico-chemical parameters and our microbiological analysis, we conclude that drinking water from MH taps in the OMHP is unsafe for consumption.

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