DEQ: Flint water system tests show improvements

Posted at 1:10 PM, Aug 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-05 13:13:49-04

The water in Flint is continuing to show improvements according to recent results, according to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.

The latest results of Flint residential and sentinel testing sites show the water distribution system is improving as work continues to stabilize the city system and replace residential lead service lines. The DEQ states the last three rounds of the extended sentinel program has shown a significant improvement to the system.

“This continuing improvement in the system is highly encouraging and demonstrates a positive change,” Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Director C. Heidi Grether said. “DEQ is firmly committed to our continuing partnership with the city and EPA to provide quality water to the residents of Flint.”

The monitoring period from Jan. 1 through June 30 showed a 90th percentile value of 20 parts per billion, which exceeds the federal action level of 15 PPB for lead under the Lead and Copper Rule. According to the release from the DEQ, this does not necessarily represent current conditions of the system.

The DEQ sent Flint a formal letter, providing the results and further actions that must be taken to ensure the federal drinking water requirements are met.

A number of the requirements relate to public notification and education, and additional efforts have been made to proactively address them. According to the release, testing results from the residential sampling effort, as well as the sentinel and extended sentinel programs, have been mailed directly to community members. These reports include information explain the results, and measures that residents can take to minimize their exposure to lead.

“The improving water conditions in Flint show that our efforts and those of our federal and local partners are having a positive impact,” said Gov. Rick Snyder. “Now we need continue working together as a team to fully restore the water quality and help the people of Flint recover.”

The city, state and EPA are encouraging residents of Flint to continue using filters and to regularly replace cartridges. Residents should also clean their faucet aerators on a routine basis, and keep the water moving throughout their homes. Flushing faucets on a daily basis and cleaning faucet aerators weekly will help reduce the presence of lead, according to the release.

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