News Releases

6/10/2016 - Safe Drinking Water a Top Priority for the City of Salina

Contact: Martha Tasker, Director of Utilities
martha.tasker@salina.org

Safe Drinking Water a Top Priority for the City of Salina

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) is investigating  the causes of elevated lead blood levels in about 30 Saline County children. The City of Salina appreciates KDHE’s response to this matter, and will assist them in any way requested.

Typical sources of lead in the home include, but are not limited to:
lead based paint, older home plumbing systems, water supply systems, yards, and other items brought in the home.

Based on strict Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) testing requirements since 1992, test results for the City of Salina’s public water system have always been well below allowable limits. Test results are reported to all City of Salina customers in the annual Consumer Confidence Report, which will be distributed with June utility statements. The report is also available online at www.salina-ks.gov/waterqualityreports.

How to Minimize Lead Exposure in Homes
The following are examples of how individuals can minimize lead exposure in homes:

  • Any time the water in the faucet has gone unused for more than six hours, let the water run before using it for drinking or cooking. The longer the water resides in a home’s plumbing, the more lead it may contain.
  • Let the water run until it is noticeably colder
    (usually about 30 seconds to two minutes).
  • To conserve water, fill a couple of bottles for drinking water after flushing the faucet, and whenever possible, use the first flush water for purposes other than consumption.
  • Do not cook with or drink water from the hot water faucet. Hot water can dissolve lead more quickly than cold water. If you need hot water, draw water from the faucet and heat it on the stove.
  • Never use hot water from the faucet to prepare baby formula.

Kansas Department of Health and Environment Public Information Meeting
The KDHE will hold a public information session on Tuesday, June 21 at 6:30 p.m. at the Salina Community Theatre, 303 East Iron Avenue in Salina.

KDHE staff will discuss and take questions about the investigation, and present plans to determine the cause or causes of the elevated blood levels and provide information on how to prevent lead exposure.

Residents included in the investigation will be contacted by KDHE and invited to attend the meeting.

For further information about the city's water supply, contact Martha Tasker by phone at (785) 309-5725, or by email at martha.tasker@salina.org