Reporting on Water Quality Testing Methods in Western Kenya
Our paper about human sensory perceptions of water quality and the tools used to quantify bacterial load in water was recently published in the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. In January 2016, Shalean Collins, Patrick Mbullo, and Joshua Miller collected water samples at both the source and storage locations for numerous households in Western Kenya. Two different methods were used to measure the concentration of E. coli, a pathogenic bacteria, in the water samples: Colilert and compartment bag tests. Our results indicate that both measures were highly correlated (i.e. they provide comparable assessments). We also found that self-reported ratings of water taste and smell were related to the quality of the water, meaning that water which people rated as tasting or smelling poorly was more likely to be contaminated with E. coli.