Health Ministry Steps In After Gross Contaminants Found In Water From Vending Machines

Come 1st January 2016, water vending machines operators will need to have license from the Health Ministry to run their business.

Cover image via The Star Online

A new regulation for water vending machines operators will come into enforcement on 1st January 2016, Health Ministry Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said

Image via Mudah

He said on Wednesday that this rule was due to the enforcement of the Regulation 360C (4), Food Regulations 1985 under the Food Act 1983.

The cost of applying for a licence for one unit of water vending machine was RM150 for a period of two years.

Dr Subramaniam said the ministry would put a sticker on the machine, which has been inspected and granted a licence for user reference.

According to Dr. S. Subramaniam, the Ministry of Health (MOH) has given the industry stakeholders enough time to comply the regulation as it was gazetted on Sept 24, 2012

Health Minister Datuk Dr. S. Subramaniam

Image via Kuala Lumpur Post

“Therefore, industry stakeholders are urged not to wait until the last minute to apply for licences. We want drinking water to be of sufficient standard,” he said.

He said to date 2,540 licence applications had been received and of these, 59 applications were approved and granted a licence, while 2,481 applications were still being processed.

“If found guilty under the regulation, a person can be fined up to RM5,000 or two years imprisonment,” he said.

Last year, a test by The Star and Forum Air Malaysia found that water from vending machines contained harmful E. coli, Coliform and Clostridium perfringens microbes – the same kind of bacteria found in untreated sewage

YES, the same kind of nasty things from in human poop and animal faeces

Image via Giphy

These bacteria can cause cramps, diarrhoea and other gastrointestinal problems

The Health Ministry has also conducted checks on a total of 630 water vending machines nationwide since August 2014, and 786 water samples have been collected from the affected machines

From the total, 22 water vending machines were confiscated of which four of them for not maintaining hygiene, 10 for containing bacteria and eight for claiming that the water sold can improve health such as recovering from blood pressure and curing diabetes, Dr. S. Subramaniam said.

It is important to ensure that the water you drink is not contaminated in any way. Otherwise this may happen:

Also: Is it safe to drink from a bottled water that is left in your car?

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