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Japanese hospital accidentally used toilet water for drinking for almost 30 years after the pipes were wrongly connected

  • Osaka University hospital discovered water pipes were connected to the toilet
  • Hospital staff have been using the water for drinking, washing, and gargling
  • The mistake dates back nearly 30 years to when the hospital opened in 1993

A Japanese hospital accidentally used toilet water for drinking for almost 30 years after the pipes were wrongly connected.

The shocking mistake was discovered at Osaka University hospital in Suita, Japan last month when it found some tap water pipes were connected to the toilet.

The hospital announced on October 20 that some of the tap water pipes in the medical department were connected incorrectly, a local media outlet Yomiuri Shimbun reported.

However, upon further investigation, around 120 taps were declared faulty and it was found the issue dated back nearly 30 years to when the hospital opened in 1993.The Osaka University hospital (pictured) in Suita, Japan discovered last month water pipes had been wrongly connected to the toilet for almost 30 years

The Osaka University hospital (pictured) in Suita, Japan discovered last month water pipes had been wrongly connected to the toilet for almost 30 years

Hospital staff and patients have been using the unsafe toilet water for drinking, washing hands, and gargling without knowing its source. 

The mistake had never been flagged and was not noticed until the hospital management started construction of a new water treatment plant. The unsafe water was discovered during an inspection of the new building.  

The university said it is investigating the matter and though the water quality is being checked, no health hazard has been confirmed.Aound 120 taps were declared faulty and hospital staff and patients had used the unsafe toilet water for drinking, washing hands, and gargling without knowing its source (stock image)

Aound 120 taps were declared faulty and hospital staff and patients had used the unsafe toilet water for drinking, washing hands, and gargling without knowing its source (stock image)

Hospital authorities also said they will check the piping and get the error rectified, according to the publication. 

Reports have claimed that the hospital checks the colour, smell, and taste of water at least once a week and no problems had been reported since records began in 2014. 

At a press conference, Osaka University researcher and hospital’s vice president Kazuhiko Nakatani issued an apology, saying: ‘I am very sorry that the university hospital that provides advanced medical care has caused anxiety.’

He added that the school will regularly check the connection of their water pipes.

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