Lead Testing Changes Recommended

By: Nick LaFave
By: Nick LaFave

Dr. Marc Edwards is a nationally recognized expert in the field of water testing. In 2003 he recognized potentially hazardous levels of lead in some parts of the Washington DC water system.

State Senator Virg Bernero had Edwards brought in to talk to the Lansing Board of Water and Light and the EPA about his method of testing for lead.

Currently the BWL uses the 'first draw' method, which takes sample of the first 30 seconds after a tap is opened. Edwards says he found substantially higher levels of lead in samples taken after the first 30 seconds in Washington. His method, profile testing, takes samples incrementally several minutes after a tap is opened.

Bernero wants Edwards' method applied here, and wants tests to be done regularly.

John Strickler of the BWL says they are open to exploring ways to improve their lead testing. But, he also says there is no detectable lead in water when it leaves their facilities. The last time the BWL tested lead levels in customer homes was in 2002. They passed and came in under federal mandates for lead levels and water quality.


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