Flint water tests show significantly lower lead levels after service line replacement

71.8 percent of tests not detecting any lead

By Dane Sager Kelly - Web Producer

FLINT, Mich. - In an announcement Tuesday, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality stated that the fifth round of CLEAR testing shows 99.4 percent of homes tested below federal requirements after service line replacement. 

Of the 170 samples taken, 169 had lead levels below the federal Lead and Copper Rule of 15 parts per billion, with 90 percent testing at 2 parts per billion or less. A total of 71.8 percent tested at less than 1 part per billion. Before the service lines were replaced, the lowest lead levels tested were 6 parts per billion.

The Confirming Lead Elimination After Replacement program began in April 2017 and was designed to collect data on homes before and after the service lines were replaced. Service lines have been replaced at more than 5,000 homes and are aiming break 6,000 by the end of the year.

“This CLEAR data is reassuring because it’s in line with 14 months of testing that shows Flint’s water is well below federal action levels and that the system continues to stabilize,” 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. "The service line replacement program is an important component of the continued improvements to the Flint water system.”

Even with the documented drop in lead contamination, the Department of Environmental Quality still advise Flint residents to use water filters for six months after service line replacement out of caution. 

The rest of CLEAR's data can be found here.

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