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Water District 20 Statement on Your Water Supply Safety


April 26, 2016 

First off, Your Water is Safe


With the ongoing news coverage of the public water crisis in Flint, Michigan and recent recommendations by Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) to flush your water before drinking and cooking has raised concerns about water safety.  For those concerned, we want to assure the public our water is tested daily and is safe to drink.  Water District #20 meets and exceeds all Federal and State requirements for water quality.


Water District 20 receives its water from Seattle Public Utilities. SPU began sampling and analysis to meet the USEPA Lead and Copper Rule in 1992. The Lead and Copper Rule sets action levels of 15 ug/L (0.015 mg/L) for lead and 1300 ug/L (1.3 mg/L) for copper. A utility must make treatment changes or meet other requirements if the action level for either lead or copper is exceeded in more than 10% of the residential samples.


Seattle Public Utilities has put a tremendous amount of effort into reducing lead and copper levels from home plumbing materials. North-end reservoirs have been covered and gas chlorination has been converted to hypochlorination for distribution system reservoirs. The Tolt Treatment Facility was brought online in 2001 and includes ozonation, coagulation, flocculation, direct filtration, fluoridation, pH control, alkalinity adjustment, and chlorine disinfection. These improvements have resulted in substantially lower lead levels in home tap samples.


Water District #20 is required to take 6 samples per year. Over the last 10 of years we have taken 60 samples. All of those samples have tested below the U.S.E.P.A standards of 0.015 mg/L. The District has maintained an aggressive maintenance program of eliminating old infrastructure by replacing aging cast iron main with new ductile iron and renewing galvanized services with copper service lines. Water District #20 provides safe and reliable water to all of our customers. Your water is Safe to Drink.


If you are still concerned there are a few simple steps you can take in the home to reduce the risk of lead in your drinking water:


  • If water has been standing in pipes for over 6 hours, flush out the pipes by running the tap for 2 minutes. To save water, use the water you flush out for watering plants or doing dishes.

  • Always draw drinking and cooking water from cold water tap — lead dissolves more quickly in hot water.

  • Never make baby formula or other drinks or food for children from the hot water tap. Start with water taken from the cold water faucet (after flushing) and warm it if necessary.

  • If you still have concerns you can have your water tested at your expense by a Qualified lab .


If you are making plumbing changes, be sure to select low-lead or no-lead fixtures. As of January 2014, a new federal law is in effect, reducing the amount of lead in plumbing fixtures from 8 percent to 0.25 percent. Manufacturers are already offering faucets that meet the new standard.


Any further concerns contact:

Michael Martin

Cross Connection Control specialist

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