Antimony
Guidelines
Unit of measurement
μg/l
World Health Organisation Standards (1993)
5.0
Standards for private water supplies in England (2016)
5.0
Standards for private water supplies in Scotland (2006)
5.0
Standards for private water supplies in Wales (2017)
5.0
European Union Drinking Water Directive (1998)
5.0

Antimony

Antimony in a metal that is found naturally occurring in water, rocks and soils. In groundwater specifically, sources of antimony can include manufacturing runoff, plumbing materials, mining wastes, and the leaching of fertilisers and landfills.

In water, antimony is tasteless, odourless and colourless and, therefore, can only be detected through chemical testing.

The World Health Organisation set a guideline maximum value for 5µ/l for antimony but well water with antimony levels greater than 6µg/L can be safely used for bathing and dishwashing.

Antimony is only a risk to human health when ingested; drinking contaminated water or using it for food preparation or teeth brushing.  Short term exposure to antimony, that is over the course of days or weeks, from drinking water with levels exceeding 30mg/l can result in nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea.

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