Health Risk Assessment of Heavy Metals through the Consumption of Drinking Water from Riruwai Mining Area Kano State, Northern Nigeria
Keywords:Adults, Carcinogenic risk, Heavy metals, HQ Value, Non-carcinogenic risk, Riruwai River, Total cancer risk
The objective of this research is to study the health risk of heavy metals associated with the consumption of drinking water from the Riruwai mining area Kano State, Northern Nigeria. The test samples were collected from various sources like underground mining area water samples, tap water samples, mining pond water samples, borehole water samples, and well water samples. The concentrations of Arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr), mercury (Hg), lead (Pb), and Zinc (Zn) were determined using atomic absorption spectrophotometer, and the measured concentrations of these metals were used to compute human health risk using the United State Environmental Protection Agency’s (USEPA) model. The results of the study indicated that the concentrations of As, Cd, Cr, Hg, Mn, Pb, and Zn were ranged from 0.005-0.35, 0.001-0.15, 0.01-0.32, ND-0.14, 0.16-0.92, 0.007-0.10, and 2.85-20.03 mg/dm3 respectively. The mean concentrations of all the heavy metals were above the desirable limits recommended by WHO and NSDWQ during both seasons except in well water samples (RGW5) and few locations where the heavy metals were not detected. For non-carcinogenic risk assessment, the HQ values of children were considerably higher than that of the adults in all sampling stations. The HQ values were less than one (HQ > 1) in both adults and children. For carcinogenic risk assessment, the total cancer risk (TCR) of Cr, Hg, Pb, and Zn were within the tolerable limit of less than 1 10-6 in all sampling sites, whereas As and Cd exceeded the tolerable limit in the underground mining site, mining pond and borehole water samples. Children were more vulnerable to cancer and non-cancer risks from heavy metals than adults. High values of cancer and non-cancer risks in children call for more attention to this group of people. The researchers recommended that the water resources of the Riruwai mining area should be continuously monitored for heavy metals especially As, Cd, Cr, and Zn, and preventative measures should be put in place to protect the health of the inhabitants of the study area.
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