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News Releases from Region 05

EPA Reminds Flint Residents to Take Steps to Reduce Potential Lead Contamination Hotline Established for Residents

Contact Information: 
Peter Cassell (cassell.peter@epa.gov)

FLINT, MICH. - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is reminding Flint residents to take steps to remove debris that may have accumulated in faucet aerators, hot water heaters, and whole-house water filtration systems.

When water flows from the distribution system to your tap, many factors in the system and household plumbing can affect your water quality. EPA is recommending that homeowners take the following steps to reduce any potential lead contamination that may be present in the drinking water system:

Residents should clean out their faucet aerators by unscrewing the aerator at the tip of the faucet, and removing any debris that has collected there. Aerators are located at the tip of household faucets and have a screen to collect particles and sediment. Until the system has recovered, EPA recommends that Flint residents clean aerators once a week.

Flush hot water tanks to remove sediments that may have been deposited into the tank.

Clean whole-house water filtration systems by flushing the system and changing the cartridge.

Pregnant women and children under six should drink bottled water until they get results showing their water is below 150 parts per billion. After that point, they should only drink water that has been through an NSF-certified, lead removal filter.

Residents are encouraged to have their water tested to be sure lead levels are below 150 parts per billion. You can do this for free by calling the City of Flint Water Plant at 810-787-6537 or emailing flintwater@cityofflint.com. EPA is also sampling drinking water in households with known lead levels of 100 parts per billion or higher, in order to test the effectiveness of filters rated to remove total lead.

As EPA learns new information during the course of this response, Flint residents can go to www.epa.gov/flint to find all of EPA's advice, information, and data.

Residents may contact the newly established hotline or email address for information about EPA's water sampling efforts. The hotline will provide immediate, telephonic translation in multiple languages.

You can call EPA's toll-free hotline at 800-426-4791, or email us at flintwater@epa.gov to get answers to questions regarding EPA's response.