We trust the water coming from our taps - we drink it, we cook with it, we bathe in that water. To most, we don't take the time to consider if that water is safe or if there are dangerous contaminants, like lead, present.
By now, nearly everyone has heard about the crisis in Flint, Michigan. Lead contamination in the water led to serious public health danger. Thousands of children were exposed to water with high levels of lead leading to elevated blood-lead levels. Just a reminder, no blood-lead level is considered safe.
In Indianapolis, the pipes connecting your home and business to the main water lines are likely made of lead. As those pipes corrode, there is an increased risk for lead contamination in our water. The below shut off valve was removed from a Meridian-Kessler home. You can see lead on both ends.
Recently, Vox Media partnered with the Washington State Department of Health to map lead exposure risk by census track. They took every state and did a county-by-county risk assessment of lead exposure based on a variety of different data points. What they found was that risk is higher in urban areas where the homes tend to be older. If you view Indiana, you'll see the highest risk area is Marion County.
To be clear these do not represent the presence of lead in the water supply, but rather the risk of having a home with lead in the water. Factors include the age of the main water line and the ages of the homes in the area. Typically, the older the home or neighborhood, the greater the risk.
So what can you do if you suspect your water may be contaminated with lead or otherwise? Your first step can be calling Hope Plumbing at 641-HOPE (4673). We can come to your home or business and test your water quality, including lead levels. From there, we can provide recommendations on how to keep your water, and family, lead-free.
Lead contamination is a very scary thing and there is still much to discover about its effects on our health. We are still gathering information about how best to deal with the lead in water lines in Indianapolis. Please consult with the EPA for additional information and exact regulations for lead in drinking water.
As we learn more, Hope Plumping will provide you with information on the lead risks and how to keep your home safe. Call today to learn more about water quality testing.