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Public Drinking Fountains In Your Country?  
User currently offlinefalstaff From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 6124 posts, RR: 29
Posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 2721 times:
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I was tinkering around with the drinking fountain in my classroom today (my workplace) and I began thinking about how common drinking fountains are in the USA and Canada. You can't go to any public building without seeing them. They are usually in the hallway near the restrooms. It isn't just public buildings either, I have been in many private buildings, factories, and other buildings that have them. This isn't a new or old thing either. I have been in buildings that are 100 plus years old and the water fountain looks old too, the one in my church was installed in the 1890s. Modern buildings have fancy new wheelchair accessible fountains. My favorite type is the pedal operated refrigerated models.

The only one I ever saw in Europe was at AMS and I only ever saw one. Last time I was there I made a joke about it being the only public drinking fountain in the EU. I saw a dog water fountain at the zoo in Halle, Germany

A few questions:

1.) Why are drinking fountains so common in North America and not in Europe?
2.) Do you see drinking fountains in your country?
3.) What do you call them? I have heard them called a bubbler in parts of Canada, Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Personally I like the things. When I travel in Europe I get tired of having to buy water, when I can get it free at home.


My mug slaketh over on Falstaff N503
40 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinelewis From Greece, joined Jul 1999, 3654 posts, RR: 5
Reply 1, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 2701 times:

I see them around Greece all the time, although sometimes they don't work. ATH has them around the airport too and you will find them in schools, public buildings and some private offices too.

User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7710 posts, RR: 21
Reply 2, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 2692 times:

There used to be some in STN oddly enough, not sure if they're still around - really haven't paid them any attention!


✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
User currently offlineAeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20730 posts, RR: 62
Reply 3, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 2691 times:

Quoting falstaff (Thread starter):
2.) Do you see drinking fountains in your country?
3.) What do you call them? I have heard them called a bubbler in parts of Canada, Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Locally here in Portland, we have Benson Bubblers:

http://www.portlandoregon.gov/shared/cfm/image.cfm?id=384632




International Homo of Mystery
User currently offlineseb146 From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 11718 posts, RR: 15
Reply 4, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 2554 times:

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 3):
Benson Bubblers:

They first bubbled out beer, IIRC. People who don't know get grossed out when I just start sipping from a Benson Bubbler. It is water. Get over it.

We have to pack our own water here in the Bay Area. So few places to get water. Or, pay $2 for a tiny bottle of water.



Life in the wall is a drag.
User currently offlineajd1992 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 2522 times:

In the UK they're not common at all, at least not where I live. I can't say they'd ever catch on here either - too many Health and Safety nuts going crazy about how unclean they could be.

User currently offlinefalstaff From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 6124 posts, RR: 29
Reply 6, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 2479 times:
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Quoting ajd1992 (Reply 5):
In the UK they're not common at all

In the UK I get funny looks when I want tap water (but not nearly as funny of a look as I get in Germany). So I could imagine a public water fountain would get little use and strange looks.

Quoting seb146 (Reply 4):
We have to pack our own water here in the Bay Area. So few places to get water

I never had any trouble finding a drinking fountain in San Francisco, not out on the street, but inside of buildings.

Quoting seb146 (Reply 4):
I just start sipping from a Benson Bubbler. It is water. Get over it.

There is a big one of those at the zoo in St. Louis, MO. It is rather popular.

Quoting seb146 (Reply 4):
They first bubbled out beer

That must be what heaven is like.  



My mug slaketh over on Falstaff N503
User currently offlineAF1624 From France, joined Jul 2006, 664 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 2474 times:

In Paris they are still quite common but less and less so.

There are two types: potable water fountains in the street and potal water taps in public garden.

http://www.routard.com/images_conten...aute/photos/publi/147/pt146945.jpg (the kind you find in public gardens)

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...Fontaine_Wallace_St-Sulpice_00.JPG (the kind you find in the streets)

But I seem to see less and less of them around.



Cheers
User currently offlineflyingturtle From Switzerland, joined Oct 2011, 2442 posts, RR: 14
Reply 8, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 2470 times:

In Basel, we have about 170 public fountains. Thirty of them are of this kind:




At the bottom, they even have a bowl where dogs can drink.

There are two reasons why there are a lot of fountains. In the middle ages, when a fire broke out, the only possibility of putting out the fire was passing water buckets along a chain of people, and so the next fountain may not be far away.

And on the countryside, we have this kind of fountain: http://www.volksstimme.ch/sites/vol/files/bika_brunnen_breit.JPG

Long, made from stone, wide, so that the cows could drink there when they were goaded back from the pastures.


David



Keeping calm is terrorism against those who want to live in fear.
User currently offlinekngkyle From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 408 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 2451 times:
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FORUM MODERATOR

I use them all the time. 99% of the time the water is just as good as bottled water, and free. The people who find any water other than bottled water to be unsanitary are a little nuts. Plus half of all bottled water is just tap water put in a bottle and called 'filtered'. Is tap water in Europe not of the same quality as in the US?

The water infrastructure for Chicago is pretty impressive. Boasting the largest capacity water purification plant in the world, largest capacity water treatment plant in the world, and probably one of, if not the largest sewage and runoff reservoir and tunnel system.

I know I'm getting a little off topic here, but the Chicago Deep Tunnel project is a huge infrastructure project that pretty much nobody knows about, and so I've found it rather fascinating. It's been under construction for 40 years, wont be complete for another 15, and has cost billions and billions of dollars. It consists of over 130 miles of tunnels up to 35 feet in diameter at depths of up to 400 feet below ground. It's designed to prevent any storm runoff or sewage from spilling into Lake Michigan or the Chicago River when there are floods, which taints the water supply for ~10 million people. The tunnels lead to one of the multiple reservoirs that hold the water until the treatment plants can catch up.

One of the reservoirs: (highway cuts in the middle of it)


Mining the tunnels:


Finished tunnel:


Construction entrance:


[Edited 2013-01-30 08:05:29]

User currently offlineFallap From Denmark, joined Jan 2009, 345 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 2444 times:

I've never seen one public in Denmark.

User currently offlineajd1992 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 2434 times:

Quoting falstaff (Reply 6):
n the UK I get funny looks when I want tap water (but not nearly as funny of a look as I get in Germany). So I could imagine a public water fountain would get little use and strange looks.

Usually in pubs they don't really care (although it's always free by law) but I can see why some people in other places may find it a little strange.

Quoting kngkyle (Reply 9):

I use them all the time. 99% of the time the water is just as good as bottled water, and free. The people who find any water other than bottled water to be unsanitary are a little nuts. Plus half of all bottled water is just tap water put in a bottle and called 'filtered'. Is tap water in Europe not of the same quality as in the US?

Eh, depends. Some European countries have pretty good water, some.... not so much. Greece has very hard water and if you live in a country with soft water you can get pretty bad stomach problems. UK residents are warned by everybody before they go abroad to Spain and Greece (at least, not sure about anywhere else) NEVER to drink the water, always buy bottled.

I can vouch for that, drank the water in Spain once by accident = afternoon on the throne. Never do that again 


User currently offlinefalstaff From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 6124 posts, RR: 29
Reply 12, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 2390 times:
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Quoting kngkyle (Reply 9):
Plus half of all bottled water is just tap water put in a bottle and called 'filtered'.

I know that Aquafina bottled in Detroit is city tap water that is filtered.

Quoting kngkyle (Reply 9):
Is tap water in Europe not of the same quality as in the US?

It isn't the same everywhere in the USA. I have drank it everywhere, but some places it tastes better than others

Quoting kngkyle (Reply 9):
One of the reservoirs: (highway cuts in the middle of it)

That is I 80/I 294. I drive over that a few times a year when I go through that area. I didn't know what was going on there. I thought that was a quarry of some sort.

Quoting ajd1992 (Reply 11):
drank the water in Spain once by accident = afternoon on the throne. Never do that again

When I travel I usually drink too much and eat too much so I never really know why I'm on the throne a lot for sure.

Quoting flyingturtle (Reply 8):
In Basel, we have about 170 public fountains. Thirty of them are of this kind:

I saw those there, very cool.



My mug slaketh over on Falstaff N503
User currently offlineWarRI1 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 9044 posts, RR: 10
Reply 13, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 3 days ago) and read 2357 times:

I have not used a public drinking fountain since high school. I shudder at the thought. I always carried a thermos bottle to work before bottled water came along.


It is better to die on your feet, than live on your knees.
User currently offlineSkydrol From Canada, joined Oct 2003, 974 posts, RR: 10
Reply 14, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 2335 times:

Doesn't bother me to drink from water fountains; they are BPA-free.

And I still remember when airplanes had water fountains. Like L-1011 and B747-100.




✈ LD4 ✈

[Edited 2013-01-30 18:57:01]


∙ ---{--« ∙ ----{--« ∙ --{-« ∙ ---{--« ∙ --{--« ∙ --{-« ∙ ----{--« ∙
User currently offlinenickh From United States of America, joined Jun 2008, 211 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 2325 times:
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Quoting falstaff (Reply 12):

I know that Aquafina bottled in Detroit is city tap water that is filtered.

The Aquafina bottled water that I have purchased here in Houston, clearly states "City of Houston Municipal Water Supply, processed through Reverse Osmosis and Activated Carbon Filtered".

As far as I know, according to federal law, if the bottled water says "Spring Water" or "Natural Spring Water", then the manufacturer is required to label the source of the "natural springs" that the water was collected from.

For example, I am looking at a bottle of Ozarka Natural Spring Water, and it states:
Only from Carefully Selected Natural Springs, and "A Blend of Piney Woods Springs, Wood County, TX, and/or Moffit Springs, Walker County, TX, and/or Roher Springs, Henderson County, TX".

I'll drink tap water also, but the spring water just tastes a little better - maybe it's the chlorine and whatever else that is in the municipal water supply. For cooking, I use water from my fridge, which has a Culligan carbon filter, which does a good job in removing some of the distaste.

Another thing - I have seen a lot of people spitting into public water fountains. That has turned me off to drinking from them.

-Nick



"We all have wings, but some of us don't know why..."
User currently offlineWarRI1 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 9044 posts, RR: 10
Reply 16, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 2322 times:

Quoting nickh (Reply 15):
Another thing - I have seen a lot of people spitting into public water fountains. That has turned me off to drinking from them.

There are some sick puppies out there. In fact maybe I am insulting dogs by comparing them to some people.



It is better to die on your feet, than live on your knees.
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5489 posts, RR: 14
Reply 17, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 2308 times:

Quoting falstaff (Reply 12):
It isn't the same everywhere in the USA. I have drank it everywhere, but some places it tastes better than others


Taste is not an indicator of quality.

I don't see many public fountains outside of building here. A few in the park where I run and each of those has a bowl for the dogs. The zoo has one that for some reason is popular and people like to take pictures.

I always have water with me. I carry a 24oz bottle around that I refill when I get the chance. I don't drink anything carbonated anymore, except beer.



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlineflyingturtle From Switzerland, joined Oct 2011, 2442 posts, RR: 14
Reply 18, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 2273 times:

Quoting falstaff (Reply 12):
Quoting nickh (Reply 15):

Here, most if not all bottled water is actually natural, mineral water. There are sources in Adelboden, Henniez, Aproz, Vals, Eptingen.

I would never ever buy water that I can get from the tap and whose only improvement is reverse osmosis and filtration. Just too expensive IMHO.

I only buy bottled water when hiking (can't stand Coke while doing that), and I often fill used bottles with homebrewed peppermint tea.

David



Keeping calm is terrorism against those who want to live in fear.
User currently offlineajd1992 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 2251 times:

Quoting falstaff (Reply 11):
When I travel I usually drink too much and eat too much so I never really know why I'm on the throne a lot for sure.

  My kind of trip.

Spanish and Greek tap water (and French as well, at least in Southern France) can't be drank by people who live in the UK because there's bacteria in it that we just aren't used to and it causes problems. Nothing bad per se, it just upsets a lot of people's gut and causes the aforementioned toilet visit.

I went to Nice last July and only drank bottled anyway. It was €1 for a 2l bottle so I didn't mind paying it. When it's €2 for a 500ml bottle, that's when I begrudge it.

[Edited 2013-01-31 01:38:34]

User currently offlineRara From Germany, joined Jan 2007, 2111 posts, RR: 2
Reply 20, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 2222 times:

Quoting ajd1992 (Reply 11):
Eh, depends. Some European countries have pretty good water, some.... not so much. Greece has very hard water and if you live in a country with soft water you can get pretty bad stomach problems.

That sounds a little dubious to be honest. Hard water is just water with a bit of calcium in it, but not more than you'd get in a beer or something. Why would anyone get stomach problems from a bit of calcium?

Stomach problems are nearly always associated with bacteria. This may be a bit more common in Southern Europe than in Northern Europe, because it's generally warmer in the south, and bacteria would spread more easily. Then again, Germany has problems with bacteria in the water regularly in the summer months. People are asked to thoroughly boil the water in this case, and use bottled water for baby food.

Still, if you're in Greece or Spain and get the runs, chances are you ate something bad rather than drink something bad. In Africa or India it's a different story..



Samson was a biblical tough guy, but his dad Samsonite was even more of a hard case.
User currently offlineflipdewaf From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2006, 1577 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 2205 times:
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Quoting kngkyle (Reply 9):
Finished tunnel:

is this before or after Bruce Willis has been through?

Fred


User currently offlinealoges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8725 posts, RR: 43
Reply 22, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 2201 times:

Quoting falstaff (Reply 6):
not nearly as funny of a look as I get in Germany

Ah, one of my favourite German paradoxes: have what is possibly the safest drink on earth right at your fingertips and then go out and buy less well-controlled bottled water.    And don't get me started on sparkling water...

Quoting Skydrol (Reply 14):
And I still remember when airplanes had water fountains. Like L-1011 and B747-100.
LH's A346s have fountains on the lower deck, in the waiting area for the lavatories (one to fill up with liquid, the other to drain it). They are, however, designed to be used with paper cups.

[Edited 2013-01-31 03:58:58]


Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
User currently offlineAF1624 From France, joined Jul 2006, 664 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 2184 times:

When I drink water (which is a lot rarer than it should be) I usually drink tap water.

The problem in Paris is not so much the water itself at the source as its quality is one of the best in Europe - but rather the pipes it goes through at the very end of the system (i.e. pipes in your building and your apartment).

Central-Paris buildings were mostly built in the 1900's so the pipes in them are maybe out of led. You can see how led in the water might become a problem...

If the buildings are relatively modern, or the pipes have been changed (which is the case in most of Paris, maybe apart from the northeastern quarters 18th, 19th and 20th arrondissement); then you have strictly no problem.

Funny story about this. My father lives in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) and when I was young and I went to visit him one day, I took a glass and helped myself to some tap water, and started drinking it. My sisters were closeby and yelled "noooooooo". I as a kid thought that this was safe to do anywhere and everywhere, ahah.



Cheers
User currently offlineSuperfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 39906 posts, RR: 75
Reply 24, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 2177 times:

No drinking fountains here in Thailand. Luckily the bottled water is dirt cheap here.


Bring back the Concorde
25 FlyDeltaJets : Aquafina and Dansani are the 2 largest filtered water companies. As stated earlier if it says purified or filtered its from the public water source.
26 Superfly : Is that the rock quarry near Calumet City just south of Chicago were I-94 cuts through? I passed that place millions of times when we used to live th
27 NoUFO : Depends on where you are, but since quality of tap water differs in the U.S. as well, I dare say both regions are on par. When, where? I am in the mi
28 kngkyle : Yep. They're nearly done mining it and it will be used as a reservoir once finished. It's 1.5 miles long, 0.5 miles wide, and 400 feet deep and will
29 Post contains images Superfly : I remember passing that huge gaping hole back in the 1970s & 80s. I had no idea it was to store water. What's taking them so long? I'd love to go
30 lewis : That is only the case on islands, especially the smaller ones that rely on water shipments or desalination plants. The mainland, including Athens, ha
31 Post contains images ajd1992 : I don't know, but after my Spanish experience with bad water I wasn't willing to take the chance again in Greece Bottled water in Greece is regulated
32 falstaff : I bet they sanitize it more often than once a year. I know back in the 1990s I worked with some private railroad passenger cars and the tanks for the
33 Kent350787 : Plenty of "bubblers" in Sydney Australia, although they do tend to be regularly vandalised. Newer playground and public facilities are starting to hav
34 Post contains links FlyDeltaJets : http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=EPA-HQ-OW-2005-0025-0005 So according to this proposal the regulation is for every 5 years to be sanitiz
35 Superfly : That is why I prefer to drink beer directly from the bottle. On my Northwest DC-9 flight, I had vodka with orange juice (screwdriver). It was a morni
36 Post contains links Rara : Three instances I remember just from the last two years: http://www.tagesspiegel.de/berlin/ich-dusche-hier-nicht/7170450.html http://www.tagesspiegel
37 Post contains images AeroWesty : If our former esteemed member Logan22L was still around, I'm sure he'd have a few words to say about this. He's the one who convinced me years ago th
38 flyingturtle : And I'm the one who thinks water from creeks is generally perfectly safe... if there are cow/sheep/horse pastures upstream, or if the water isn't cle
39 Rara : They really do. We use one of these filters for our tea water, since our tab water here is so chalky. If I don't change the filter for a while, the t
40 AR385 : Stomach problems, hardly. Over time it will cause Kidney problems, such as stones. Due to the mountaious area where I live, which are mainly made of
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