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West Virginia to review lead water lines in Clarksburg

July 2, 2021 GMT

CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia officials will review lead service lines in Clarksburg for elevated levels of the toxin in drinking water.

The Department of Health and Human Resources on Friday said the review comes after sampling in several homes showed lead levels above a limit set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Dr. Ayne Amjad, the state health officer, urged parents of young children who live in older homes to discuss the risk of lead exposure with a pediatrician.

Lead lines were phased out in the 1950s, the agency said in a news release, and it’s unlikely homes built after 1960 would have them.

“Parents of children younger than 6 years of age who are living in older homes serviced by the Clarksburg Water System should discuss the risk of lead exposure with their child’s pediatrician to determine if precautionary blood lead testing is needed,” Amjad said in a statement.

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The Bureau for Public Health’s Office of Environmental Health Services is also working on the review together with the town’s water system.

“The issue was first identified by staff in BPH’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program during environmental lead assessments that were conducted in the homes of children diagnosed with elevated blood lead levels,” Amjad said.

The agency also advises people in older structures that may have lead service lines to flush lines for at least three full minutes before using the water for consumption or when brushing teeth.