Lead Testing for NYS School Drinking Water

Lead Testing for NYS School Drinking Water
Posted on 09/30/2016

On September 6, 2016, Governor Andrew M Cuomo signed landmark legislation mandating that schools across the state test drinking water for lead contamination.  In anticipation of this legislation, the South Jefferson Central School District voluntarily began the water testing process this summer. With the assistance of the Jefferson-Lewis BOCES Health and Safety Office, 255 water samples were collected and submitted for testing.

Our testing took samples from drinking water sources such as water bubblers, drinking fountains, and sinks typically used for water consumption.  The new legislation requires us to now test additional locations including custodial closet slop sinks, and other locations that are not typically used as sources of drinking water but might be.  We are in the process of working with the Jefferson-Lewis BOCES Health and safety Office to complete this additional sampling and testing.

Of the 255 test samples taken so far, seven were above the threshold level of 15 parts per billions (ppb) of lead as set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for safe drinking water. Water to these fixtures has been shut off and we will be posting the required signage per the regulations to indicate the fixtures are out of service and not be used.  Although water from these fixtures should be safe for handwashing and cleaning because human skin does not absorb lead in water, these locations will remain out of service completely until each one is remediated and test results indicate the water meets EPA standards for consumption.  The affected locations are:

Clarke Building

  • Sink in MS Band Room
  • Sink in Dental Clinic
  • Fountain in HS Girls' Locker Room

Wilson Building

  • Bubbler in Room 217
  • Bubbler in Room 307
  • Utility sink in kitchen

Mannsville Building

  • Sink in Library Office

Samples from all other locations tested were under the threshold. 

Results of Lead Testing will be posted to our Safety and Security Page.

Further information on lead testing can be found on the EPA's website at www.epa.gov/ by typing in Lead Water Testing in Schools in the search box.  Once we receive additional information on the remaining sample results we will place that on our school website as well.

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