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Michigan Ag News Headlines
Flint Water Test Well Below Federal Action Level
Michigan Ag Connection - 12/06/2017

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is providing an update on several facets of water quality testing in which data shows that Flint's water system has consistently tested well below the 15 parts per billion (ppb) federal action level and is comparable to similar water systems across the state and country.

"Consistency of several types of extensive testing data is reassuring and further supports that Flint's water system has stabilized," said Keith Creagh, director of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and former interim director of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality who remains the principal on Flint water. "In addition to the positive water testing data to date, Mayor Karen Weaver's service line replacement program is an important component to the future long-term integrity of the Flint water system."

The seventh round of CLEAR (Confirming Lead Elimination After Replacement) testing data shows that 100 percent of the 146 samples collected were below the 15 ppb federal action level after service line replacement was completed. The 90th percentile of homes tested was 2 ppb.

The sixth round of CLEAR testing data showed that 99 percent of the 153 samples collected were below 15ppb. The 90th percentile of homes tested was 2 ppb after service line replacement. Service lines have been replaced at over 6,000 residences, to date.

The CLEAR program began in April 2017 and was designed to collect baseline data on homes prior to service line replacement and then to conduct monthly testing for six months after service lines were replaced to monitor lead levels.

The CLEAR study is meant to provide information on the impact that physical disruptions have on lead levels in homes where service lines are replaced. The data from this study has national repercussions as water systems across the country attempt to develop strategies for lead service line replacement.

The Flint water system has tested well below the 15ppb action level of the federal Lead and Copper Rule for over a year and a half. The most recent 90th percentile lead value for the 6-month compliance period between Jan. 1, 2017, and June 30, 2017, was 7 ppb. This included homes that have a lead service line or meet other criteria that make it an eligible location to determine compliance with the federal LCR. The 90th percentile lead value for the previous 6-month compliance period between July 1, 2016, and Dec. 31, 2016, was 12 PPB. The next 6-month monitoring period ends Dec. 31, 2017, and is expected to, again, test well below federal standards.

To date, since Nov. 3, CORE (Community Outreach and Resident Education) team members have visited over 16,000 homes encouraging residents to have their water tested for free. Teams made over 4,500 contacts and provided nearly 3,200 water testing kits, with some residents passing on the opportunity to get their water tested. Teams will attempt another visit at the residences where contact was not made.

In addition to the residential water testing effort, CORE members have completed over 434,000 visits at Flint homes and had over 137,000 conversations with residents to make sure they are properly installing and maintaining their filters and aware of available resources.

While data supports that the use of water filters becomes a matter of personal choice after service line replacement, out of an abundance of caution, residents are reminded to use filters for six months after service lines are replaced to ensure protection against possible particulate releases due to physical disruptions caused during the service line replacement. CLEAR, LCR and other testing results can be found by visiting

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