The Ann Arbor Public Schools and the City of Ann Arbor Water Treatment Department have partnered to test the water for lead in all of the buildings in the Ann Arbor Public Schools. At this time, there are no buildings with a parts per billion number of 15 or higher. A number of 15 or higher rises to the Actionable Level. Three sets of water samples were provided to the certified lab affiliated with the Ann Arbor Water Treatment Department and the results are posted below.
The first sample dated April 21, 2016 provided the results from 17 of our school kitchens which are listed as Not Detected or in the range of the 1-5 Maximum Contaminant Level Goal (MCLG) measured in parts per billion (ppb).
Results from the second sample dated May 6, 2016 listed the remainder of our kitchens, hallway water fountains, athletic concession stands, and athletic field training rooms. Of note were the Huron Concession Bldg. (59 ppb) and the Huron Training Room sink (16 ppb). The water lines servicing athletic areas lie dormant from November to the end of April and should be flushed for at least two hours before any use or sampling. The lines were not flushed, resulting in the high action level numbers.
Since that time, the lines have been flushed for several hours, as indicated in sample three. The Huron Concession Bldg. now has a result of Not Detected and the Huron Training Room Sink is not at an actionable level (9 ppb).
Though not at actionable levels, the following steps are currently taking place:
- Replacement of the Logan water fountain by room 321 (was 8 ppb)
- Installation of a commercial water filter at Northside STEAM to improve the water aesthetic. Though perfectly safe, the water can appear rusty and brown.
- Replacement of the faucet and pipes leading to the sink in the Huron Training room (9 ppb)
Several resources are available below for additional information about drinking water in schools. The resources include a FAQ about lead in the Ann Arbor water system, authored by Brian Steglitz, Ann Arbor Water Treatment; and the Technical Guidance Manual to Reducing Lead in Drinking Water in Schools, authored by the EPA.
Finally, in consultation with Mr. Steglitz, an action plan has been developed to provide a full assessment and inventory of all of the pipes in our buildings; the writing of procedures for flushing lines after extended vacation periods; and the scheduling of ongoing water sampling. A copy of the action plan can be found on the district website.