High levels of disinfectant found in East Providence drinking water

News

EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The City of East Providence is alerting residents that the city’s water system recently violated drinking water standards. City officials stressed that this is not an emergency and finding an alternative source of water is not necessary, but said residents had the right to know about the high levels of disinfecting chemicals in the water system.

The East Providence Department of Public Works is required to monitor the drinking water for the presence of disinfection byproducts (DBPs) on a quarterly basis. The city passed out fliers to residents Wednesday, saying the test results from the last four quarters, which ended on December 31, 2017, show that the their system exceeds standards.

At this time, the city said there is no reason to find another source of water, but to consult a doctor if anyone has any specific health concerns. City officials said some people who drink water with higher DBP levels over the years may experience problems with their liver, kidneys or central nervous systems, as well as an increased risk of cancer.

According to the Department of Public Works, when the disinfectants react with naturally-occurring organic and inorganic matter in the water, the DBPs are created. The Water Utilities Division will be installing an aeration system in the Kent Heights Tank designed to reduce DBP levels.

City officials said the problem should be resolved by August. Anyone with further questions should contact the East Providence Water Utlities Division at (401) 435-7741.

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