The Dayton Daily News identified dozens of cities, counties, schools and businesses in Southwest Ohio that indicated there was a high probability of lead service lines in their systems.
However, some areas that were developed in later years claim that they had no lead service lines in their systems. Systems operated by cities or counties could submit a verification form to the EPA claiming to have no lead service lines.
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If a system submits the form, they have to prove the claim by showing historical permit records, local ordinances, distribution maintenance records or information about installation dates for all service lines. That does not account for the lead components that could be present on private property and in internal plumbing.
Butler County, which maintains 39,408 water service connections, serves water to a population of more than 100,000. The county water department sent a letter to the Ohio EPA stating there are no lead services lines to its knowledge within the publicly owned portion of the system. The service lines are made of copper material or polybutylene pipe, according to the department.
Clark County, which purchases water from the City of Springfield, said no lead service lines “have ever been located by the Clark County Staff during normal maintenance activities or repair, however it is possible lead services exist.” The county submitted seven different maps to the EPA to cover its entire system area.
The City of Englewood explained it replaced its water meters in 2006, and found no lead service lines at that time. Its water mains are made of ductile iron pipe and its services are made of copper.
Fairborn also claimed to have no known lead service lines, but specified that buildings constructed prior to 1998 had a higher chance of containing lead solder within plumbing. According to historical plumbing codes, the city’s service lines are either galvanized or copper.
The city of Fairfield also claimed to have no lead service lines, as its water treatment plant and original distribution system were created in 1957 — after lead service lines were widely recognized as a health hazard, the city wrote to the EPA. There is no record of any lead service line being installed in Fairfield. Most service lines are copper.
The city of Franklin submitted a map which showed lead lines are likely present in areas near: River Street, Park Avenue, Riley Boulevard, Main Street, North Dixie Highway and the Great Miami River.
Greene County, which submitted eight maps to the Ohio EPA, also submitted a verification form claiming no lead service lines are present within its system. The county’s map identifies areas that have “potential to low risk” of lead to “extremely low to no risk” areas, and stated the public mains are made of iron or plastic. However, brass valves or meters could contain low levels of lead.
Huber Heights has 16,000 active water service lines, and 95 percent of its water services go to residential buildings. Its map shows building constructed before 1986 have a greater chance of having lead solder, but are also connected to copper service lines. Buildings built from 1986 to 1998, and after 1998 are also connected to copper pipes. The city also claimed to have no known lead service lines.
The City of Miamisburg is currently developing a strategy to “deal with lead service lines,” and has homes built as early as 1809. The city’s map found that homes built before 1998 had the highest likelihood of containing lead solder in plumbing on private property. Several areas of Miamisburg have a great chance of having lead service lines.
New Carlisle serves about 2,200 residential and commercial accounts, and the system does have lead goosenecks in the older section of the city. That section’s water system, which was built between 1930 to 1950, is actively being replaced, according to a letter sent to the EPA. The city also has lines made of copper, plastic and galvanized steel pipe.
Most of the homes in Oakwood were built between 1900 and 1950, and its water system does have lead services lines. Some areas in the northwest corner of Oakwood underwent replacements projects, updating streets with new ductile iron water mains and copper service lines. There are approximately 3,666 service connections, and it is determined more than 1,000 short lead service lines have been replaced with copper pipe.
Oxford has lead service lines present on both public and private property. Its public water system was installed in 1895, and more than 200 structures in the community are being served with lead service lines.
Piqua found lead service lines are most likely present in the oldest part of the city that was constructed before 1940. The city’s standard since 2008 is to use copper pipe, and it is worth noting that the service lines to all elementary schools in the system have been replaced.
Preble County, which is a rural part of Ohio, claimed to have no lead service lines within the area served by Aqua Ohio — a water utility company. The county’s map also specified that property owners are responsible for their own service lines.
Sidney identified service connections known or likely to contain lead. The city’s map shows a significant amount of verified lead lines, and also identified areas likely to contain lead solder or fixtures. The city developed a program to remove the lines from the distribution system, according to a letter sent to the Ohio EPA.
Lead service lines stopped being installed in West Carrollton sometime in between the 1950s and the ’60s. The city did not keep track of materials used in the water system, and had to base its map off of building ages. The city claims they do not know of any lead service lines on public property.
Several other cities and counties also submitted maps, but disclosed less detailed information. Springboro found certain areas and private properties were likely to have lead components in internal plumbing, and Springfield also confirmed their system had lead service lines.
Other areas that likely have systems with lead lines include: Troy, Miami County, Vandalia, Tipp City, Wilmington and Xenia. Yellow Springs also claimed its system has no known lead services.
The Dayton Daily News has compiled maps for communities that have lead service lines. Visit MyDaytonDailyNews.com for a more in-depth look at how each community is impacted by aging infrastructure.
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