Tap water monitoring results from samples taken in New Jersey cities showed high lead levels
After finding elevated levels of lead in drinking water in some Paterson, N.J., homes and buildings, the Passaic Valley Water Commission (PVWC) has issued a warning notice to area residents.
The agency said tap water monitoring results from samples taken during September and October showed high lead levels in Paterson, Clifton, Passaic and Prospect Park.
Here are the steps the commission is suggesting residents take:
- Run your water to flush out lead. Run water for 30 seconds to two minutes, or until it becomes cold or reaches a steady temperature before using it for drinking or cooking, if it has not been used for several hours. This flushes lead-containing water from the pipes. Flushing usually uses less than 1 to 2 gal of water and costs less than 30 cents per month.
- Use cold water for cooking and preparing baby formula. Do not cook with or drink water from the hot water tap; lead dissolves more easily in hot water. Do not use water from the hot water tap to make baby formula.
- Do not boil water to remove lead. Boiling water will not reduce lead.
- Look for alternative sources or treatment of water. You may want to consider purchasing bottled water or a water filter. Read the package to be sure the filter is approved to reduce lead, or contact NSF Intl. at 800.673.8010 or www.nsf.org  for information on performance standards for water filters. Be sure to maintain and replace a filter device in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions to protect water quality.
- Test your water for lead. Call PVWC at 973.340.4300 to find out how to get your water tested for lead and for a list of local laboratories that have been certified for testing water quality.
- Get your child tested. Contact your local health department or healthcare provider to find out how you can get your child tested for lead if you are concerned about exposure.
- Identify if your plumbing fixtures contain lead. New brass faucets, fittings and valves, including those advertised as “lead-free,” may contribute lead to drinking water. The law currently allows end-use brass fixtures, such as faucets, with up to 8% lead to be labeled as “lead-free.” Visit the NSF website to learn more about lead-containing plumbing fixtures.
Click here  for the full notice.