Dec 28, 2000

Spokane Lead Pipe Replacement Will Reduce Health Risk Concerns

Drinking water containing lead has increased concerns in Spokane, Wash., which is leading to a pipe-replacement program.

Approximately 975 homes have World War II-era lead pipes. Although testing has shown that lead levels are within federal safety limits, increased concerns over the health risks have forced the city to consider alternatives.

Residents who want to replace the lead pipes will be asked to spend an average of about $400, the cost of replacing the piping that leads from the property line to the home. The city--through its Water Department's maintenance fund--will replace its share, which runs from the water main to the property line, for about $1,500, said Water Superintendent Frank Triplett, creating a possible total cost of approximately $1.46 million.

Because all the affected homes have lead levels in their water within the acceptable limit, many homeowners are not expected to utilize the program.

Some of the lead problems can be reduced simply by running the tap a little before using the water to get rid of the stagnant water that might contain lead.

(Source: The Spokesman-Review)

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