Samples from Ferndale’s municipal water system have lead levels exceeding state standards

Boiling water does not remove lead

FERNDALE, Mich. – Samples from Ferndale’s municipal water system have lead levels in the drinking water exceeding state standards, according to officials.

Oakland County Health Division (OCHD) was notified by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) about the results from testing. Testing occurred as part of routine compliance sampling required by EGLE under Michigan’s Safe Drinking Water Act.

The OCHD is coordinating the distribution of free water filter kits to Ferndale residents who qualify on Oct. 28 from 3 to 6 p.m. at the Gary Kulick Community Center (1201 Livernois St, Ferndale, MI 48220).

“The quality of our drinking water is vital to the health of residents,” Oakland County Executive David Coulter said. “Oakland County stands ready to support our local communities by helping them comply with lead rules, distributing NSF-certified water filters to qualified households, and educating the public.”

To qualify for a filter a household must:

  • Receive water from an affected area.
  • Have a pregnant woman or at least one child under age 18 living or spending several hours in the home weekly, AND who receives WIC benefits, Medicaid health insurance, or has difficulty affording a filter ($35) or replacement cartridges ($15).

If you have questions you can contact Oakland County Health Division’s Nurse on Call at 1-800-848-5533, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. until 12 p.m. or

OCHD has a laboratory that can test water for lead and copper. Bottles for those tests can be purchased at Health Division Offices for $24 per testing bottle.

If you suspect your home’s plumbing or faucets could contain lead or lead-based solder, you should have your water tested. Boiling water does not remove lead. Click here for more information.

READ: Water testing shows elevated levels of lead in numerous Metro Detroit cities, but what does it mean?

Tips for reducing exposure to lead in water:

  • Run your water to flush out lead-containing water.
  • If you do not have a lead service line, run the water for 30 seconds to two minutes, or until it becomes cold or reaches a steady temperature.
  • If you do have a lead service line, run the water for at least five minutes to flush water from the plumbing of your home and the lead service line.
  • Consider using a filter to reduce lead in drinking water. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services recommends that any household with a child or pregnant woman use a certified lead filter to remove lead from their drinking water.
  • Look for filters that are tested and certified to NSF/ANSI Standard 53 for lead reduction.
  • Be sure to maintain and replace the filter device in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions to protect water quality.
  • Use cold, filtered water, for drinking, cooking, or preparing baby formula.
  • Do not boil your water. Boiling will not reduce the amount of lead in water.
  • Clean your faucet aerator to remove trapped debris.

About the Author:

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.