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EPA Flint Drinking Water Response Activities - Update 1/29/16

Release Date: 01/29/2016
Contact Information: Peter Cassell, 312-859-9614, cassell.peter@epa.gov

FLINT, MICH. -- NSF-International certified lead-removal filters are being distributed in Flint by the state of Michigan to remove lead from household water and make it safe for people to drink. EPA began sampling drinking water in households with known lead levels of 100 parts per billion or higher, in order to test the effectiveness of these filters at removing lead at high concentrations. The goal of this sampling effort is to determine how well the certified filters perform at removing lead from household drinking water. We have confidence in the filters, but we're double checking the high lead homes with sampling to ensure that the filters work in these cases.

Samples will be sent to an EPA laboratory for analysis. The quality assured results of the samples collected by EPA will be shared with individual homeowners and the results will be posted on EPA’s website. EPA will also ensure removal of any personal information from the results and will post the preliminary data as soon as it becomes available.

EPA is also closely monitoring progress by the state of Michigan, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and the city of Flint to meet their obligations required by the Safe Drinking Water Act emergency order that EPA issued on January 21, 2016.

Yesterday, EPA met with representatives from the state, MDEQ and city to discuss compliance with the order, including actions to make sure all data is publicly available and progress related to operational improvements. This initial meeting was productive and EPA anticipates providing regular updates related to the order moving forward.

EPA considers the actions required by the order essential to restoring the safety of the Flint water system and protecting public health. The order requires the state, MDEQ and the city to take a series of immediate steps to address the drinking water contamination in Flint. It also requires that necessary information promptly be provided to the public in a clear and transparent way.

EPA will continue to work with the city of Flint to monitor drinking water quality and to ensure the public is receiving up to date information.

EPA information is available at www.epa.gov/flint and Spanish language information is being provided online.