Cory6188
Topic Author
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Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Thu May 12, 2005 11:53 am

I was thinking about this when I was flying on CO from PVR-EWR last year. While I know that many airlines double cater from their hubs for the food on both the outbound and return flights, catering still needs to come to the plane at the outstation to replace ice and water. When you are departing from a country where the water is, well, questionable, such as Mexico (no offense to any Mexican members here), is it safe to have a beverage on the plane with ice in it? I know that the soda is already canned and is safe, but what about the tap water sources, such as ice or tank water, that have been refilled by local catering companies?
 
aviationwiz
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Thu May 12, 2005 11:57 am

Just ask for bottled water, that's what I do, whether it's Domestic in the States, or a hop down to South Africa. The taste difference alone is reason enough to ask for bottled water, versus the crap that comes out of the tap.
Proudly from the Home of the Red Tail.
 
Cory6188
Topic Author
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Thu May 12, 2005 11:59 am

It's a given that they serve bottled water. I'm talking more about the ice that they put in the cup.
 
airbear
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Thu May 12, 2005 11:59 am

Simple... I never accept ice in any drink, and any water must be out of a bottle.
 
schipholjfk
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Thu May 12, 2005 12:03 pm

Most catering companies are global such as Skychef, etc and they maintain uniform standards around the world. How many people do you see dropping dead from eating airline food or drinking bad water onboard an airliner? If they did... A.net would be full of horror stories! Sanitary standards at airline catering kitchens in majority of the world is of higher standards than your neighborhood restaurants. I would not worry about it. And if in doubt just drink bottled water and leave ice out.
The fun of flying... love it !!!
 
DLPMMM
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Thu May 12, 2005 12:15 pm

The water that they use to make the ice is purified, as is the ice in 4 and 5 star hotels pretty much world wide. I've never had a problem from the ice on a major airliner, and I've flown most everywhere except Aus/NZ (I don't think they would be too dicey).

I admit that I didn't have the ice on CZ last year (it had to be the worst wine ever made, and the plane smelled like a stable, literally).
 
acidradio
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Thu May 12, 2005 4:02 pm

As far as aircraft potable water, CO requires that water taken onboard at a non-US station be tested to determine that it is equivalent to US drinking water standards. The water is actually sampled and sent to a lab for regular testing. Of course we've all heard about potable water in aircraft tanks, but at least the water and water trucks are sanitized to the same standards as they would be domestically. It's not coming from some "questionable" source.
Ich haben zwei Platzspielen und ein Microphone
 
Trvlr
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Thu May 12, 2005 5:08 pm

Most hotels in less-developed countries purify their water by boiling it or using more rigorous purification processes. I assume catering companies do the same.

Aaron G.
 
N1120A
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Thu May 12, 2005 5:16 pm

As far as Mexican water goes, it is not an issue of quality. People who live there have no problem with it. Many Americans get sick drinking European tap water because of the difference in bacteria.
Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
 
Tod
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Thu May 12, 2005 11:54 pm

Quoting Schipholjfk (Reply 4):
How many people do you see dropping dead from eating airline food or drinking bad water onboard an airliner?

Getting sick from bad water can take up to 2 weeks and in many cases people cannot pinpoint the source.

Quoting DLPMMM (Reply 5):
CZ last year (it had to be the worst wine ever made

I believe the polite wine term for that stuff is "earthy"  yuck 
 
DLPMMM
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 4:35 am

Quoting N1120A (Reply 8):
As far as Mexican water goes, it is not an issue of quality. People who live there have no problem with it. Many Americans get sick drinking European tap water because of the difference in bacteria.

I have to somewhat disagree with you, but semantics may be part of the problem.

Water is by definition H2O, and as such any other stuff in there is an impurity.

The levels and types of impurities are the determinants of "quality".

The human body is a marvelous machine when it comes to adapting, and will adjust to almost anything over time. People who live in Mexico or India have no problem drinking the tap water, but their systems have become immune from the contaminants over time. A NRI business associate of mine that grew up in Mumbai gets very sick from the food and water there now when he visits, even though it did not bother him while he was a child and young adult.

When I eat or drink the wrong thing, I generally know in less than 1 hour.

It has become a bit of a game for me. I've managed my last 3 trips (out of 8 total) to India without getting "Delhi Belly", which I am rather proud of.
 
bwaflyer
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 4:46 am

The potable water tanks on the 73G that we at AEU fly round trips of 5-7 hours each way are way too small. We don't uplift water at destination (due to the level of contamination). That means that we have to extra careful on the flights not to use any water that we don't have to (brewing the minimum amount of tea / coffee etc). However with a full passenger load each way, often the water runs out half way through the return trip. Toilets only suck and don't flush, no extra cups of tea for the crew - it's not pleasant, but it beats the alternative!! We carry ice from the UK for the round trip, and plenty of bottled water and wet wipes for the loos!!
 
schipholjfk
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 4:58 am

Quoting Tod (Reply 9):
Quoting Schipholjfk (Reply 4):
How many people do you see dropping dead from eating airline food or drinking bad water onboard an airliner?

Getting sick from bad water can take up to 2 weeks and in many cases people cannot pinpoint the source.

With all due respect I have traveled to numerous countries throughout Asia, Africa and Latin America and have experienced water-related stomach problems... and also have a very good training in medical sciences... sickness arising from water borne bacteria will manifest very, very quickly. Within 48-72 hours. And secondly, if this was such a huge problem in our law suit happy society we would have had hundreds of law suits against airlines related to on-board potable water problem. In today's global world especially when it comes to airline operations (including on-board catering) it is pretty standardized as long as you are working with a reputable vendor. Majority of the food handling and water purification systems at these catering companies are imported from the US or EU and staff trained by people from the West. It's not something I would worry about. As I said before... on-board catering gets more scrutiny than your local neighborhood restaurants' kitchens.
The fun of flying... love it !!!
 
jeb94
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 5:27 am

It can be the same in the US as well. the difference in water from city to city can make people sick. I got sick in the mountains of Colorado from the water, though I grew up in Denver. As for water from the potable water tank, I'll never drink it. That's just my personal feelings based off things I've seen inside the tanks and water lines.

[Edited 2005-05-12 22:29:03]
 
MD11Engineer
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 6:55 am

I would advise anybody against drinking the tap water in the aircraft lavs. The aircraft tanks get usualy desinfected every A-check, about once a month, but you´ll never know what kind of water gets filled in. The coffee makers and faucets in the galleys receive their water through an antibacterial filter, which also gets changed regularly and makes this water safe.
BTW, this topic has been discussed many times before in the Tech/Ops forum.

Jan
Je Suis Charlie et je suis Ahmet aussi
 
jetdeltamsy
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 7:16 am

NEVER DRINK ANYTHING BUT BOTTLED WATER ON ANY AIRCRAFT ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD.

it is a tremendous risk. there is never a guarantee that the water is not contaminated. standards for sanitation vary widely and are not reliable anywhere, within the US or anywhere else. never ever drink the water from the onboard taps.
Tired of airline bankruptcies....EA/PA/TW and finally DL.
 
CORULEZ05
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 7:19 am

Quoting Cory6188 (Thread starter):
such as Mexico (no offense to any Mexican members here)

excuse me??????????? What is so wrong with Mexico's water? Talk about one of the biggest stereotypes. Perhaps at ONE POINT IN TIME we had a problem but not anymore. I refuse to further comment on this less than perfect thread...if you can call it that.


oh and:

VIVA MEXICO AND ITS WATER!!!!!!!!
Fly jetBlue today!!!!!!!
 
concentriq
Posts: 283
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 8:04 am

Quoting Cory6188 (Thread starter):
Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply...

Switch to C2H5OH. always a safe supply
 Smile
Mobilis In Mobili
 
ComeAndGo
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 8:16 am

H2O in most airlines including US airlines is bad. Don't drink it. You're better off not washing your hands. Same is for hospitals.
 
kaniksu
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 8:17 am

Quoting N1120A (Reply 8):
As far as Mexican water goes, it is not an issue of quality. People who live there have no problem with it. Many Americans get sick drinking European tap water because of the difference in bacteria.

Most Americans believe it is an issue with Mexican water specifically. I know I've heard that my whole life. I guess a lot of people have images of Mexico being third world and not up to normal standards and therefore the water is unsafe.

When I was in Europe for the first time I got really ill in my first week there. Horrible stomach pains that almost knocked me down. It was really bad. I was told by my American friends that it happened to all of them the first time as well, and the same to Europeans when they visit the US. So when I go to Mexico for the first time this month I'll probably drink the water  Wink lol
 
N62NA
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 8:37 am

I must have a very sensitive stomach, because there are some cities where I absolutely have a problem after drinking the water (Chicago, Washington DC) and others where I don't have any problems at all (New York, Los Angeles). Fortunately, I have never had a problem with the water here at home in Miami - even when I would just come down from NYC to visit.

Unfortunately, I will be flying up to DCA for the weekend tomorrow... Sad
 
afay1
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 9:20 am

The CDC reccomends that people do NOT drink the Washington, D.C. water, I got a notice in the mail awhile ago. Mexico does have bad water if one isn't used to it, and never drink water from a plane's tap no matter where it is from and/or flying to/from.
 
satx
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Sup

Fri May 13, 2005 9:54 am

Quoting ComeAndGo (Reply 18):
You're better off not washing your hands.

Congratulations! That's about the least sensible thing I've read all day. Care to explain how you came to this conclusion?
Open Season on Consumer Protections is Just Around the Corner...
 
N62NA
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 10:16 am

Quoting Afay1 (Reply 21):
The CDC reccomends that people do NOT drink the Washington, D.C. water, I got a notice in the mail awhile ago.

Huh? I can't believe that would be a long-standing directive. Usually municipal water authorities will issue a "boil water" notice for a few days if a water main ruptures or something like that.

Can you please elaborate on this? Thanks!
 
Cory6188
Topic Author
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 10:36 am

Quoting Concentriq (Reply 17):
Switch to C2H5OH. always a safe supply

You know, it's kind of sad that I was able to read your post and actually know that you were referring to ethanol. AP Chem has taught me the most useless things...I can actually understand the ingredients in my shampoo bottles now...

I know this is kind of off-topic, but can you even drink ethanol? Is it safe? In lab, I've become so accustomed to assuming that everything is incredibly dangerous that I wouldn't even consider drinking a chemical. For anyone who has some chemistry knowledge, we were working with 6 M HCl today in lab...nasty stuff.

[Edited 2005-05-13 03:37:53]
 
concentriq
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 1:16 pm

Quoting Cory6188 (Reply 24):
but can you even drink ethanol?

hehe. thats the only alcohol formula that i could remember at the time, and i used it because you used another chemical formula in your post, and hey, folk medicine says that alcohol cures all  Smile . im no chemist, but i think that ethanol is the alcohol that they refer to when they talk about alcohol content in beverages (Correct me if im wrong). but then again, it is off topic.

ps. your finals must be coming up. good luck.
Mobilis In Mobili
 
Cubsrule
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 11:32 pm

Ethanol is the alcohol content in beverages.

It's important to note that having 2 ice cubes in a drink and 3 glasses of tap water will produce wildly different effects. The effect of changes in water is also wildly different from person to person. I've been in Chile 3 months and was drinking tap water from the very beginning and have had no problem. I know others who tried as hard as they could to avoid it and got sick from the trace amounts used in cooking, etc.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
MD11junkie
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Fri May 13, 2005 11:50 pm

Just one question to all you guys that say not to drink anything but bottled:

Why... and why on earth would an airline put unpurified/not potable water into its airliners when they could EASILY be subject of a law suit.. specially in the US.

I live in a so called "third world" country (I don't believe that is the correct term anymore since the fall of the Soviet Union happened almost 15 years ago)... and I've had water-stomach problems (confirmed by a doctor, my father) in a KL plane out of ORY for AMS. This is not about the country... this is about how clean is the airplane.

Cheers! wave 
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There is no such thing as Boeing vs Airbus as the queen of the skies has three engines, winglets and the sweetest nose!
 
AMSSpotter
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Sat May 14, 2005 5:14 am

Quoting Kaniksu (Reply 19):
When I was in Europe for the first time I got really ill in my first week there. Horrible stomach pains that almost knocked me down. It was really bad. I was told by my American friends that it happened to all of them the first time as well, and the same to Europeans when they visit the US.

On my trips to the States, I've always been drinking tap water and it never made me sick. Actually, the US is one of the last countries where I would worry about the quality of tap-water. I did notice a (sometimes strong) difference in taste in US-tap water which, I guess, is caused by the way the water is being treated (the amount of chlorine used, etc.). I remember that the water in Vegas had a "funny" taste to it but being able to have all the sparkling tap-water that you want in the middle of the dessert is a little miracle by itself, so who has the right to even complain about this in the first place, ha ha?! Apart from that, I think they need to add quite some chlorine to the tap-water in the Vegas-area to make sure that bacteria have no chance in that hot climate.

Quoting N1120A (Reply 8):
Many Americans get sick drinking European tap water because of the difference in bacteria.

I don't think you can really talk about "European tap water" since every country is sort of free in determining the way it prefers to "clean" it's tap-water.
For instance, here in the Netherlands, we normally don't add any chlorine (not to mention fluoride) to our tap-water at all. People are just too "scared" to drink chlorine-treated tap-water because of the rather nasty smell and the toxic nature of chlorine. We have always wanted our tap-water to be of "bottled water quality" which makes tap-water pretty expensive.
Apart from the authorities, the Consumer's Organization regularly tests our tap-water and they have stated more than once that there is no real point in buying bottled water in the Netherlands.
 
FA4AM
Posts: 33
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Sat May 14, 2005 7:44 am

Drinking water from any faucet or tap in Mexico could make you ill, since it has a large amount of bacteria. All Mexicans drink bottled water, well, at least those who can afford it.

Now regarding water from the plane, I can assure you it will be the same quality in Mexico, U.S. or Europe. Actually, about two months ago a Mexican newspaper did some research on this issue, they found out that company supplying water to AM planes was the same who supplied it for a Coca Cola bottler in the area.

Ice should be no issue either, unless your FA grabs it with his/her hand  Smile
 
B744F
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RE: Onboard H2O From Countries With Unsafe H2O Supply

Sat May 14, 2005 7:52 am

most bottled water is just tap water anyway

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