Flint mayor says replacement of tainted pipelines ahead of schedule

Karen Weaver announces more than 18,000 pipes have been replaced

By Jason Colthorp - Anchor/Reporter, Derick Hutchinson

FLINT, Mich. - Flint Mayor Karen Weaver couldn't hide her smile Tuesday as she announced the replacement of tainted pipelines throughout the city is ahead of schedule.

Last year, Flint officials were tasked with replacing 18,000 lines -- at least 6,000 per year for three years.

"We're here today because we have surpassed that," Weaver said. "It's a day for celebration."

Weaver said the city has replaced 18,313 water lines a full year ahead of schedule.

She added that an additional 10,000 to 12,000 pipes still need to be examined and possibly replaced.

The celebration was tempered when Weaver was asked if tap water is now safe to drink. She said residents should stay on bottled water until the Environmental Protection Agency gives the all clear.

"The water is testing better, but with the construction in the city, we don't want to risk shaking a lead pipe loose," Weaver said.

If all goes well, Weaver said the remaining work would be finished by July. Then, maybe, Flint residents will be able to drink out of their faucets again.

Some Flint residents told Local 4 they won't simply take Weaver's word for it. They said they'll never again take water for granted.

You can watch Weaver's full announcement below.

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