Mesa Water District Offers Testing for Lead in Drinking Water at Local K-12 Schools

boy drinking water

The California State Water Resources Control Board Division of Drinking Water is encouraging K-12 schools to have on-site water sources tested to ensure that drinking water is safe from lead. As part of this effort, the California State Board of Education is contacting schools throughout the state to inform administrators of available resources and requirements.

Mesa Water District is available to test the drinking water at all K-12 school sites within the service area. The test is free and will cover the costs of collecting and analyzing samples and reporting the results to the school and state.

Mesa Water is Clean, Safe and Pure

Water quality is top priority at Mesa Water.  We work to ensure the safety of the drinking water we deliver to schools every day. Our water quality team monitors the water supply and conducts over 30,000 laboratory tests each year. Water samples are tested in our laboratory and certified by the State of California. Results of these tests show that Mesa Water’s water supply meets or surpasses all state and federal drinking water standards. For more information, view the Annual Water Quality report.

Why Are School Sites Being Tested for Lead?

Because California has newer infrastructure and less corrosive water than other parts of the country, lead problems at the tap are rare. But national events have highlighted the importance of ongoing water quality monitoring. When lead is found in tap water, it is typically because the water chemistry has caused it to react and leach out metals from plumbing fixtures or pipes inside a home or building.

Mesa Water has no record of lead service lines within its water distribution system. However, this may not be true for on-site water pipes (non-Mesa Water pipes) at older school locations that used older faucets and fittings that included small amounts of lead or lead solder pipelines before it was banned by the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments in 1986.

What is tested?

The new drinking water lead sampling tests will be conducted on the actual school site after it has left the Mesa Water distribution system and has passed through the meter and into the on-site school pipes. Areas to be tested include drinking fountains, cafeteria/food preparation areas and reusable water bottle filling stations. Schools are responsible for any needed corrections to on-site plumbing.

How to Request Testing

Mesa Water is here to help all K-12 schools in its service area. To request testing, a school administrator must make the request for lead testing in writing to Mesa Water with a copy sent to the State Water Resources Control Board. Mesa Water has 60 days to meet with the school and develop a sampling plan. Mesa Water will submit test results to the State Division of Drinking Water. The deadline to request testing is November 1, 2019.

Questions?

More information on the new California school lead testing program, which is being administered by the California Division of Drinking Water, can be found here.

K-12 schools within the Mesa Water service area should contact the school district office. Private schools with questions should contact Mesa Water’s Water Quality department at 949.574.1031.

Parents with questions regarding this testing program should contact the school district or school directly.

If you have health questions related to lead in water, please contact the Orange County Department of Health at 714.567.6220 or visit these resources: