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