More than half of all travellers are getting ill through drinking dirty water abroad.
Diarrhoea is the most common illness resulting from contaminated water, affecting up to 50% of all international travellers.
Other commonly associated symptoms with poor drinking water are nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramping, bloating and fever.
High-risk destinations are the developing countries of Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia.
There are some serious illnesses which can be contracted from contaminated water including Cholera, Dysentery, Giardiasis and Typhoid. Experts are now advising that if travellers want to be confident their drinking water is safe, they should adopt precautions such as disinfecting, or boiling it. There are portable UV light devises on the market that can also purify water, but it still needs to be free of any nasty particulate materials.
The new traveller gadget is a portable water filter. These filters are so fine that they can filter out even microscopic organisms, making water safe to drink but not affecting its taste, unlike other systems, like disinfectants, which can add an unpleasant flavour to the water.
Philip Dean, director at Sawyer, one of the leading specialists in water filter manufacture said: “Unsafe drinking water abroad is a huge danger for travellers and holiday-makers. People often turn to bottled water but even this isn’t always safe in some developing countries, particularly where the bottled water has been sourced from local areas and contains bacteria which can make travellers ill. The new water filters on the market offer an inexpensive solution to the problem.”
Sawyer has now launched a filter which is the lightest and most versatile system on the market and unlike many other filters will last for decades. The system uses technology derived from kidney dialysis, and the filters are the finest out there. Hollow fibre membranes engineered to produce micropores in “Absolute” microns, make it impossible for harmful organisms to pass through.
The lightweight system “Squeeze Water Filter” includes a water filter, a sturdy flat bag and a cleaning device and at 85 grams it can fit into a pocket quite easily. The system is also specially designed so it can be screwed onto most water bottles if the bag isn’t to hand.
Philip Dean said: “There are no products on the European market that offer this level of protection, yet are as compact and easy to use. At a retail price of £60 you get a filter able to last a lifetime without the need for replacement cartridges of any kind, this system really does make a good investment. Travellers won’t need to be reliant on purchasing bottled water for their entire trip because they can instead just utilise our system, cutting the need to carry around heavy water during a trip and making it safe to drink from taps or even rivers and streams.”