Dangers of Vinyl Chloride

Train spill of toxic chemicals

On February 3, 2023, a train carrying toxic materials was derailed in East Palestine, Ohio. Amongst many health and environmental concerns, the incident serves as a stark reminder of the dangers of hazardous substances like vinyl chloride contaminating the drinking water supply.

The derailment caused a cloud of smoke and fire to erupt, which raised concerns of pollution via toxic chemicals from five of the tanker cars. One of the leaked chemicals, vinyl chloride, is a severe health concern.

Vinyl chloride is commonly used in the production of PVC pipes, but it can also be found in tobacco smoke and other products. When released into the environment, it can easily contaminate water sources and pose a serious threat to public health.

Vinyl chloride can cause a range of health problems, including liver damage and cancer. It is poisonous at just 1 ppm (this is equivalent to a single drop in a large bath tub) meaning that even a small amount can still be a health risk.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified vinyl chloride as a Group 1 carcinogen. Studies have shown that long-term exposure to vinyl chloride can increase the risk of developing liver, lung, and brain cancer.

The East Palestine accident has resulted in severe environmental damage that will require a long-term, multi-faceted approach to resolve effectively. However, in the short-term, the immediate risk of exposure to vinyl chloride via the water supply can be addressed by using a water filter that removes vinyl chloride.

Both the Santevia Gravity Water System and MINA Alkaline Pitcher remove 99% of vinyl chloride from drinking water as well as other contaminants like chlorine, heavy metals, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Both products use a multi-stage filtration process:

  • in the first stage of filtration, Santevia removes harmful contaminants such as chlorine, heavy metals, and vinyl chloride;
  • in the second stage of filtration, Santevia adds back in healthy minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and potassium.

Using Santevia's water filtration systems is a simple and effective way to ensure that your drinking water is free from harmful contaminants like vinyl chloride. Santevia products are suitable for use in any household with potable water, providing a convenient way to improve the quality and safety of your drinking water.