Sunday, June 22, 2014

29 Kentucky water systems violated health-related standards for drinking water in 2013; here's a detailed list

Twenty-nine Kentucky water systems committed health-related violations of federal drinking-water rules in 2013. Each public water system is required to give its customers an annual report on its adherence to the federal Safe Drinking Water Act and state regulations implementing it, but the notices usually produce few news stories, even when they are published in local newspapers.

The reports from the state Division of Water to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency report the violations in the aggregate, not the specific, so Kentucky Health News asked the division for a list. The most common violations were for compounds that are usually a byproduct of drinking-water chlorination: trihalomethanes, some of which can cause cancer, and haloacetic acids, which are suspected of being carcinogenic but have not been proven to be so. Other violations were for the presence of coliform bacteria, which are common in the feces of warm-blooded animals, and turbidity, which has no direct effects but can make water more susceptible to contamination.

The systems in violation of the health-related standards were (one each unless noted): Beattyville (turbidity and coliforms), Campton (2 for haloacetic acids), Carlisle (trihaolmethanes, 2 for haloacetic acids), Cave Run Regional Water (2 for organic carbon), Christian County (coliforms), Earlington (coliforms), Falmouth (haloacetic acids), Franklin (turbidity), Hartford (3 for trihaolmethanes, 4 for haloacetic acids), Hazard (haloacetic acids), Jessamine County (coliforms), Jessamine South Elkhorn (coliforms), Kentucky-American Water Co. (turbidity), Kirksville (coliforms), Knox County (coliforms), East Laurel (coliforms), Liberty (2 for haloacetic acids), Lynch (4 for organic carbon), McKee (3 for turbidity), Martin County (trihaolmethanes, haloacetic acids), Mayking Head Start Center (trihaolmethanes), Millersburg (2 for haloacetic acids), North McLean County (turbidity, coliforms), Morehead (turbidity), Rattlesnake Ridge (coliforms), Salyersville (turbidity), Warren County (coliforms), Williamstown (turbidity), Ellis Park (coliforms) and Northpoint Training Center (haloacetic acids). For a list of the violations by category, click here.