Lead in Drinking Water

Author: John Benson

Schools and municipal buildings should follow the 3Ts.

Schools and other municipal buildings in New York and across the nation generally are not required to monitor their taps for lead, copper or any other contaminants, but many are wondering what they should be doing to ensure the drinking fountains and cafeterias have safe, clean water. Keeping mindful of financial constraints and budgets, how do you successfully execute an accurate and financially sound sampling plan? How do you know it’s being done correctly? What do the results actually mean, and where do you go from there?

This is not a new issue or concern. B&L has been performing water quality sampling at schools, municipal buildings, and numerous other buildings for decades. So why are elevated lead concentrations being found in school drinking water now? Many reasons –– some of which are identifiable by following proper sampling protocols and experience.

With so much at stake, it pays to be educated and take a methodical approach to the testing and, if necessary, remediation. Fortunately, the EPA has several guidance documents available:

It’s clear that this issue can cause legitimate concern in communities. Approach it as you would any other health and safety issue. Get the facts, consult with an experienced water / health professional, and then calmly execute an effective plan to protect all involved.

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