April 11, 2014
Panic buying of bottled water broke out in Lanzhou, the capital of Gansu province, on Friday after state media announced authorities had “detected excessive levels of benzene in [its] tap water system”.
Officials found 200 micrograms of benzene per litre – 20 times the acceptable “national limit” – in samples of the city’s water supply, according to reports.
Exposure to benzene, a colourless liquid used to make plastics, lubricants, dyes, detergents and pesticides, has been linked to leukemia and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
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