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A Cautionary Note About Lead in Seattle Water


Since recent reports of lead in Tacoma’s water supply, Seattle has been running tests here. FNC is posting this information because older homes, like a number in Fremont may be at risk. However, Seattle is reporting that recent testing in five sites around the city showed no lead levels to cause concern.  In part, the Seattle Times said: “…[Seattle Public Utilities–SPU] is testing water in Seattle homes that may have their supply threaded through a lead connection between the water main and the service line to their house.

“Those typically are homes built before 1930, with galvanized service line 1 inch or smaller. There about 8,000 such lines in the city, and SPU knows from anecdotal reports by crews working on lines that about one in four are connected to the main with a lead gooseneck fitting — so called because of its curved shape.

“SPU will soon produce a map of where those 2,000 lines are all over the city. On Friday it tested the water in three homes on those lines and it will test a few more Saturday to ensure the water is lead free. Results should be available early next week.  [An update today showed no lead problems in Seattle sites tested, but “anytime the water in a particular faucet has not been used for six hours or longer, ‘flush’ your cold-water pipes by running the water until it becomes as cold as it will get.”] In the meantime, two minutes with the tap on is a lot of water wasted down the drain, … Flushing the toilet, taking a shower or watering the plants also will get the water moving in pipes. …

“At issue is not only the lead fittings between the main and service line but the galvanized lining in some of the service lines, which may have anywhere from 0 to 2 percent lead in the coating, said Wylie Harper, SPU’s drinking-water quality director. Over time the lining could corrode, releasing lead. SPU, like other utilities, continually treats its drinking water with lime to modify the pH and keep corrosion in check.”

Link to the full story here.  And link to information about lead in water here. And to a map here–you’ll need to enter your location and then click on the water line image on the map to pull up the data about what kind of pipe enters your property and when it was installed.


 

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