Lead Pipes Maps to Help Ohio Water Systems Prevent Lead Exposure

The Ohio EPA required water systems to send in maps identifying lead service lines. (Image courtesy of kuruneko / Shutterstock)
The Ohio EPA required water systems to send in maps identifying lead service lines. (Image courtesy of kuruneko / Shutterstock)
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Most of the state’s 1,878 water systems have sent in their maps identifying lead pipe lines to the Ohio EPA this month. The goal is for local utilities to use the maps in targeting areas that may be at the highest risk of lead exposure when taking water samples.

Preventing lead exposure might mean injecting the water with a solution to prevent lead from leaching into the water, or simply replacing lead pipes with safer ones, says Todd Danielson of Avon Lake Regional Water.

"So what the map really — the best benefit of the map — shows is where houses might have lead service lines," Danielson said. "Our utility, when we do water line replacements, if we find a lead service line, we replace it."

The Ohio law passed last year also requires water systems to notify the public far more quickly than before if samples from homes show high levels of lead. The Ohio EPA says the maps are available on its website, with the intention of being fully transparent to the public so citizens can identify high-risk areas themselves.

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