PLANO, TX —In light of a recent social media firestorm over drinking water safety, the City of Plano hired an independent lab to test water across the city for safety and compliance.
The tests were done during the final days of the North Texas Municipal Water District’s chlorine maintenance program — the genesis of the debates.
The water debaucle began with a Facebook post from activist Erin Brokovich accusing the District of improperly treating the water supply, which later spun off a very active Facebook group called “Safer Water North Texas” and efforts from both city officials and water districts to prove the safety of the water.
The results of the test, The City of Plano said in a statement, proved that the drinking water remained safe to drink, even during the chlorine maintenance program.
The routine treatment process often produces two chemical byproducts called Trihalomethanes and Haloacetic acids. While the EPA has identified these chemicals as potentially carcinogenic, The City of Plano points out the less harmful nature of limited exposure.
In the report, the city compared them to x-rays, writing that the occasional x-ray procedure is completely safe but a lifetime of exposure to the rays poses a high health risk.
“There is no immediate risk from water with THMs above 80 micrograms per liter, as the slight risk of increased health concerns occurs only after decades of drinking water with consistently elevated THMs,” the report states.
The report notes the maximum locational running annual average (LRAA) for Trihalomethanes is 0.080 milligrams per liter (ml/L) or 80 micrograms per liter (ug/L). The maximum allowable level of Haloacetic acids is 0.060 milligrams per liter (ml/L) or 60 micrograms per liter (ug/L). You can compare present levels to LRAA requirements in the tables below.
Although the water treatment program ended March 26, Brokovich announced plans to visit Plano in mid April.
The tables below are taken from the City of Plano’s report on water testing.
Lead image via Shutterstock