Too much lead shuts off 14 NES sinks

by Audrey Thomasson

CLARAVILLE—Elevated lead levels have shown up in water samples taken from Northumberland Elementary School, according to a report announced at a recent school board meeting.

A comprehensive analysis of potable water at the 22-year-old facility showed affected levels came from 14 of 136 locations. Maintenance and facilities director Cris Kallenberger and plumber Jason Smith reported the 14 elevated samples came from one hand washing sink, 11 restroom sinks and two classroom sinks. Readings ranged from 16-35 parts per billion (ppb). Lead levels with less than 15 ppb are considered acceptable for drinking water in schools.

EPA guidelines recommend schools stop using fountains or faucets that show lead concentrations above 20 ppb. However, the Centers for Disease Control report there are serious consequences to any amount of lead contamination…