• Number of SCS schools that tested positive for lead increases to 24

    Updated:

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Two dozen Shelby County schools tested positive for traces of lead. 

    Originally a statement was sent to FOX13 which said, routine testing was performed and 10 out of 165 locations had results 1% above the EPA threshold in one or more specific fountains. 

    However, new documents show that the number has grown to 24 and includes faucets in the kitchen. 

    Below is the list of those 24 schools and the device where the lead was found 

    B.T. Washington High School  Cooler
    Berclair Elementary Cooler
    Central High School Kitchen sink
    Charjean Elementary Kitchen sink
    Chickasaw Elementary Bubbler
    Double Tree Elementary Bubbler & Cooler
    Douglas (pre-k) Kitchen sink
    Douglas Elementary/Middle Pot filler & kitchen sink
    Egypt Elementary Pot filler
    Gardenview Elementary Bubbler
    Havenview Middle Kitchen sink
    Idlewild Elementary Kitchen sink & cooler
    Keystone Elementary Pot filler
    Kingsbury Elementary Bubbler
    Kingsbury Vocational Kitchen sink & cooler
    Raleigh Egypt High Bubbler
    Ridgeway Middle Ice machine
    Sheffield High Bubbler
    South Park Elementary Cooler
    Treadwell Middle Bubbler
    Westside Elementary Pot filler
    Whitehaven Elementary STEM School Bubbler
    Whitehaven High Cooler
    Wooddale High Bubbler

     

    RELATED: What are the symptoms of lead poisoning?

    The results come less than a year after a Tennessee law went into effect requiring schools test drinking water for lead.  This only applies to schools built before 1998. 

    "If results are greater than 15 parts per billion (ppb) but less than 20 ppb, the school shall conduct testing on an annual basis until retesting confirms the level is less than 15 ppb," the American Academy of Pediatrics said. 

    Shelby Co. Schools released a statement saying in part: 

    Even though most of the affected fountains are not frequently used, as part of the District’s proactive and precautionary process, these fountains were all shut off and immediately removed from use, and they do not have any effect on any other fountains or water sources in the building. Parents at affected schools have been notified. SCS is following all of the proper procedures to safely remove these fountains from use and keep our children safe. 

    Back in 2017, FOX13 reported MLGW was replacing lead pipes in daycares across the city. 

    FOX13 found 790 homes have been tested since we started asking questions.  12 tested above the EPA safe limit. 

    The full investigation is available here.


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    So what's next? 

    District leaders at SCS are encouraging parents to contact the health department for further guidance. 

    Water fountains that tested one percent above the EPA threshold have been shut off or removed. 

    A spokesperson said the impacted sources removed do not have an effect any other water sources in the building.

    FOX13 has learned a SCS Risk Management team is going to evaluate every water source and determine whether more action needs to be taken.

    The team plans to oversee the retesting of each water source within 90 days of these corrective actions. 

    All water sources affected are going to remain out of use until it is determined they meet state standard.

    The district's risk manager, Anthony Krome, said most of the water fountains impacted were not used frequently. 

    "A lot of potential lead contamination comes from, from our prior experience, comes from lack of use. If a fountain is used on a regular basis, flushed, then the potential -- there's not to say there can't be, but the potential of less risk of lead contamination if that fountain is used on a regular basis," said Krome.

    The test results from one more group of schools is still being processed.  

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