Elevated levels of lead found in drinking water of 3 Southampton homes

Hampshire County

Close-up of running water from a faucet.

SOUTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – A recent sampling of drinking water by the Southampton Water Department has revealed elevated levels of lead in the drinking water of three homes. In all, 20 homes were sampled.

According to a release sent to 22News by Southampton Water Superintendent Thomas Gaughan, a re-sampling of water in those three homes found lower levels of lead, “below levels of concern.”

“The initial and follow up sampling results are taken seriously by the Water Department, and additional sampling will occur to further assess the situation,” the news release said.

Southampton Water Department’s water comes from the town’s Glendale Well, which, according to the department, is lead-free and has not been found to be corrosive to household plumbing over the 50+ years the town has been using the water.

In the release, the department says water, if left exposed to plumbing fixtures and piping long enough can pick up low levels of lead and copper.

The Southampton Water Department suggests the following tips below to reduce exposure to lead in your water:

  •  Run your water to flush out lead. Run water for 15-30 seconds to flush lead from interior plumbing or until it becomes cold or reaches a steady temperature before using it for drinking or cooking, if it hasn’t been used for several hours
  • Use cold water for cooking and preparing baby formula.
  • Do not boil water to remove lead. Boiling water will not reduce lead.
  • Test your home for lead: The only way to determine the level of lead in drinking water at your home is to have the water tested by a state certified laboratory. The cost to test is usually between $10 and $50. A list of labs is available on-line here.
  • Get your child’s blood tested. Contact your local health department at 413-529-1003, or healthcare provider to find out how you can get your child tested for lead if you are concerned about lead exposure.
  • Identify and replace plumbing fixtures containing lead. A list of plumbing fixtures can be found on the NSF 61 list of low lead fixtures. Check your fixtures against the NSF 61 listing here.
  • The Southampton Water Department has not installed lead service lines to its water customers; however internal plumbing in older homes should be checked for lead pipes.

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