Fresh campaign focuses on compliance with health, standards, and safety and security requirements for public drinking water coolers. Image Credit: Supplied

Abu Dhabi: The Abu Dhabi City Municipality is urging owners of private homes and villas with drinking water coolers for the public placed outside their residence to ensure that they comply with the conditions for installing and operating the coolers.

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These coolers are commonly placed outside by homeowners — especially during summer — as a courtesy to community members who may collect water from them.

They should also modify or change the cooler’s location in accordance with health, safety, and other relevant standards to protect the health and safety of members of the community who use these coolers.

It comes amid an inspection campaign carried out by the Abu Dhabi City Municipality through the Municipality Services Sector—Public Health Department on public drinking water coolers in all areas within its geographical scope, inside and outside Abu Dhabi Island.

During the campaign, inspection teams emphasised the importance of complying with health conditions, standards, and safety and security requirements for public drinking water coolers.

This includes adhering to health requirements and following decisions and regulations governing the operation of these coolers.

Approval needed

It is strictly prohibited to install coolers in public places without first obtaining the municipality’s approval.

Owners of public drinking water coolers should ensure that they obtain approval before installing, modifying the location of, or changing these coolers.

Abu Dhabi City Municipality announced that those wishing to install public drinking water coolers can easily obtain a permit through the digital platform for Abu Dhabi government services (Tamm), and provide all the necessary requirements to comply with health, environmental, and public safety conditions.

Rules for placing coolers

Obtaining a permit for the installation and operation of a drinking water cooler requires meeting specific conditions.

Some of these conditions include the installation must be performed by a licensed specialised company approved by the municipality.

It must be ensured that the infrastructure where the cooler is installed, such as sidewalks and roads, is not damaged.

Other rules

• Submission of a water and electricity bill issued by the main provider

• The water cooler must be installed on a concrete base with a thickness of 10cm (from the ground level).

• All electrical connections must be in good condition, securely fastened, and placed inside insulated pipes

• The water cooler must be equipped with approved filters, which must be cleaned and replaced as needed according to the manufacturer’s instructions

• The water taps must be in good working condition to prevent water waste

• A metal plate measuring 10cm x 6cm must be affixed to the upper right front of the water cooler. This plate must contain the municipality’s permit number, the emergency phone number, and the QR code that has been issued.

Keeping records

The Abu Dhabi City Municipality has emphasised the importance of cooler owners retaining documents that contain records of cleaning, disinfection, and water sample test results.

These records should be kept in a file that is readily available for inspection by municipal inspectors.

In the event that a water sample is found to be contaminated, the cooler owner must promptly empty the cooler, stop it from operating, and take all necessary measures to remove the contamination.

The cooler should only be restarted after a water sample analysis has been conducted to verify that the contamination has been removed.

The Abu Dhabi Municipality emphasises the significance of following maintenance, cleaning, and disinfection procedures for water coolers every six months.

To ensure the highest levels of safety for these coolers’ users, at least one water sample test per year should be conducted at an accredited laboratory.