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City of Columbia to deliver initial water samples to Department of Natural Resources


The City of Columbia collected 82 sample bottles of water from customers and is sending them to the Department of Natural Resources on Friday for copper and lead testing, a spokesman said Friday.

This comes after the City admitted in February that it didn't test water samples for copper and lead in 2022 as required by state regulations. DNR sent the City a report about the violation last month.

"Our water is stable," Matt Nestor, a Water and Light spokesman, said. "Historically, we have not had issues with lead and copper being found in the water and we remain confident that our water is safe."

The samples in question are taken from Columbia Water and Light customers' homes to see if pipes have been contaminated with the metals.

"We determined about 1,600 residences that were built before 1950," Nestor said. "We sent letters to all those residences and got responses from some."

Nestor said the City will drop off the specimen kits to your home, and then pick them up to be taken to a lab.

Columbia is also planning on delivering 18 sample bottles to customers on April 6, Nestor said.

The City also offered testing for anyone else who wanted it. These tests will not be handled by the DNR but instead by a private lab contracted through the city. Forty samples were sent to a private laboratory and were received by the lab on March 16

Nestor said more than 20 customers have signed up to be tested in April.

A letter was sent March 3 to roughly 1,600 customers asking customers to participate in the testing program.

Letter sent to customers on March 3.
Article Topic Follows: Columbia

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Ethan Heinz


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