Lead Testing in Drinking Water
On July 24, 2017 the City of Highland Park, continuing with its commitment to provide safe drinking water, began annual testing of all water fountains accessible to the public. Though the drinking water supplied by the City of Highland Park Water Plant is lead-free, buildings may have elevated lead levels due to old plumbing or fixtures. While there has been no indication that lead is present in the water at any facility, public safety is paramount and annual testing is a critical precautionary measure. This action exceeds State water testing requirements.
City staff will collect water samples at City-owned buildings. The water samples will be taken to a certified laboratory and tested for lead. Testing is the best way for organizations to know if there are elevated levels of lead in the drinking water and to quickly eliminate any potential problems. Lab results take approximately three weeks to complete. All City-owned buildings will receive the test results; any necessary remediation work will be conducted and results will be posted on the City website as they become available.
Last year, the City of Highland Park began extensive water testing in order to ensure public safety and transparecy by testing for the presence of lead. Please see the list of sample results for 2016.
For more information on the lead testing initiative, see our lead testing FAQ.
The United States Environmental Protection Agency’s (USEPA) action level for lead is 15 parts per billion at which point remedial action is recommended. For those fixtures with unsatisfactory lead levels, City staff turned off and covered the affected water fixtures as soon as confirmation was received of lead presence in those fixtures. The City took immediate steps to secure the sites and is in the process of replacing the impacted plumbing and fixtures. The lead testing results are isolated to specific fixtures that were tested and are not reflective of the City’s water production or distribution system. The replaced water fixtures will be retested and won’t be turned back on until fully remediated.
For more detailed information, please see the link understanding the issues of lead in drinking water.
If you are concerned about lead exposure, you can have the water in your home tested for lead. The City of Highland Park Water Treatment Plant laboratory is not certified for metals analysis. Please see the link of accredited labs for lead testing for a list of laboratories that can test residential water samples.
Questions can be directed to the Water Plant at firstname.lastname@example.org or 847.433.4355.