Feds say everyone in Flint can drink filtered tap water - WNEM TV 5

Feds say everyone in Flint can drink filtered tap water

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FLINT, MI (AP) -

The federal government says filtered tap water is safe for everyone in Flint, Michigan, lifting a recommendation that pregnant women, nursing mothers and children under 6 drink only bottled water to avoid lead exposure.

The announcement Thursday is based on tests of filters that have been distributed for months for free by the state of Michigan and the federal government. The Environmental Protection Agency says the filters remove or reduce lead to well below the action level of 15 parts per billion.

The EPA says samples from high-risk areas in Flint have been coming back at less than 1 part per billion.

Flint used the Flint River as a water source for 18 months, but lead leached from old pipes at homes because the water wasn't treated to control corrosion.

Mayor Weaver released the following statement in regards to the EPA filter study:

“I’ve met with officials from the United States Departments of Environmental Protection Agency and Health and Human Services to discuss the findings of the EPA study on water filters and their effectiveness on removing lead.  It is reassuring to hear that the results of the study show the filters do work and work even better than we thought. I appreciate the work the EPA has done with this study. One of the issues addressed is the importance of making sure the filters are installed properly. It’s critical that Flint residents are educated on the effectiveness of the filters and how to use them correctly. We are taking steps to do that through our town hall meetings and with help of a grant from the U.S. Department of Labor, and in cooperation with our local partners, GST Michigan Works! We are going to recruit and hire local residents to be Filter Education Liaisons to assist with the installation of filters and replacement cartridges to ensure that everyone who needs help can access it. There is still a need for bottled water because for example, some homes have faucets where the filters don’t fit. The federal government will continue to supply bottled water through August according to the emergency order and the state has committed to continue providing supplies beyond that. While it’s good to know we can safely drink filtered water, this is not the ultimate solution to the problem in Flint. We still need new infrastructure, replacing the lead-tainted pipes in the city remains my top priority.”

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. 

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