Thursday, January 20, 2022

Residents urged to check water pipe connections for lead

While results of later testing are pending, Inkster residents are being cautioned about the lead levels in drinking water.

In 2019 when 30 samples were studied as required by state law, four of the samples exceeded the action levels required and the city replaced the water lines in the area with new copper lines. In December of 2020, eight of 62 samples exceeded action levels and new copper water lines were installed in those areas. Results of 2021 required testing are still pending, officials said, although residents are warned of the possibility of excessive lead on all residential water bills.

Inkster residents are advised to determine if the service line into their homes is lead by checking the pipe connected to the residence water meter. Residents should gently scratch the pipe with a coin and if it appears to have a shiny, silver color and it won't hold a magnet, there's a high possibility it is lead, officials said. Copper doesn't hold magnets either, but that material has more of a penny-like color, they advised.

To reduce lead exposure, Inkster residents are encouraged to run water for 30 seconds to two minutes if the home does not have lead service line. If the house or apartment does have a lead service line, residents are advised to run water for up to 5 minutes before use.

Do not use hot water for drinking, cooking or preparing baby formula, officials advised and reminded residents that boiling water will not reduce lead levels.

Officials also say human skin does not easily absorb lead, so unfiltered water can be used for showers, washing hands, dishes, laundry and cleaning.

Water filters are available by contacting the Inkster Department of Public Services (313) 563-9774.