In the past, lead was a common component of faucets and plumbing. Most new plumbing is considered to be lead-free, but there are many homes, businesses, and schools that still have lead-containing plumbing components. Most of the time, lead-based plumbing does not impact the water that flows through it. However, when drinking water becomes corrosive, lead can leach out of the pipes and fixtures and cause contamination. The DEQ currently regulates over 1,300 Oklahoma public water supplies for lead via implementation of EPA’s Lead and Copper Rule. However, the Lead and Copper Rule is primarily focused on testing for lead in residences; it does not require testing in schools or daycares. To address this issue and to protect our children in the places where they learn and are cared for, the DEQ has started a program to offer free sampling and testing of school and child care center drinking water for lead. Public schools and public or private child care centers who participate receive free sampling materials and laboratory testing, and guidance on what steps to take to eliminate lead from the drinking water being served at their facilities.”
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It is crucial to review and understand the EPA’s 3 Ts Toolkit; Training, Testing & Taking Action. Below is a link to review for each step of implementing the program.
Sampling conducting during this project will primarily be the responsibility of facility managers. Participating facilities will receive sample kits in a sealed shipping container from the SELSD , along with labels corresponding to the number of outlets that the facility has identified on their completed inventory forms. Participants will be advised to complete the sampling and return shipment of the samples to the SELSD so that samples arrive well within the maximum holding time to 14 days. Sample received outside the 14-day time frame will be rejected. Below are video tutorials and instructional documents for correct sampling process and procedures. If these procedures are not followed, samples could be subject to rejection
- EPA’s Lead in Drinking Water Page
- CDC Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program
- Oklahoma Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program
PARTNERING TO REDUCE LEAD EXPOSURE