Public warned about bogus drinking-water filters

Labor Ministry’s commissioner of standardization says consumers should make sure suppliers are reliable, have a physical address and comply with gov't standards.

The public should be on the alert for companies that selldrinking-water treatment systems for domestic use that don’t meetgovernment standards, the Industry, Trade and Labor Ministry saidMonday.
“We saw the need to warn the public after conductingtests of several companies’ drinking-water treatment systems for homeuse, especially ones that sell water filters via the Internet or bytelephone,” Grisha Deitch, the ministry’s commissioner ofstandardization, told The Jerusalem Postin a telephone interview. “We found cases of drinking-water filterproviders selling their products via the Internet or by telephone thatcould not be traced to a physical address, which means that consumercomplaints cannot be dealt with, and it makes supervision impossible.”
Theministry is not against Internet purchases, she said, but consumersshould be careful when buying drinking-water treatment systems and makesure the suppliers are reliable, have a physical address and complywith government standards.
“I am calling upon the public not tobuy water filtration and purification systems that were not tested bythe Israel Standards Institution,” Deitch said.
Even though theHealth Ministry says local tap water complies with accepted standards,manufacturers and importers of water-treatment systems in recent yearshave been saying the drinking water is of poor quality, and the publichas purchased thousands of residential drinking-water treatment systems.
TheIsraeli Standard SI 1505, Part 1, Drinking Water Treatment Systems forDomestic Use – Filtration and Purification System was enacted in 1999to regulate companies that sell water-treatment systems.
Thestandard covers packaging and labeling requirements, manufacturers’declarations of the manner of filtration or purification, materials andmeans of filtration or purification, test methods and requirements forelectrical safety, hydraulic function, filtration and purificationefficiency, including microbiological tests.
The Industry, Tradeand Labor Ministry has published recommendations for consumersinterested in buying drinking-water treatment systems for domestic use:
•Firstly, consumers should make sure that imported and locallymanufactured products have labels that indicate the origin andmanufacturer, including company address, model name and trade number.
• Secondly, water-filter and purification products must have detailed information on the systems’ properties.
• Thirdly, the products should have clear instructions for usage and installation.
TheIsrael Standards Institution provides a list of water filter andpurification companies that comply with the SI 1505 standard, which canbe viewed on its Web site.
The Industry, Trade and LaborMinistry is launching an awareness campaign in the local media, issuingwarnings in Hebrew, Russian and Arabic.