Monday, January 07, 2013

Clarity Needed for Our Water Report

During the period 2004-2006 Bloomfield's water quality led it to be  designated as one of the five most polluted towns in NJ, in terms of it's Haloascetic acid (HAA5) levels. Much has been done to reduce these levels in the years that followed.

Bloomfield Township last week sent notices to some residents warning that the level of trihalomethanes (chemical contaminants that are by-products of chlorination) in their drinking water exceeds federal standards.
Particularly concerning to some residents is the warning in the flyer:
People who drink water containing trihalomethanes in excess of the MCL (maximum contaminant level) over many years may experience problems with their liver, kidneys, or central nervous system, and may have an increased risk of getting cancer.
 Bloomfield’s “total trihalomethane” (TTHM) problem was first identified in April 2011.
People with severely compromised immune systems, people with an infant, and some elderly may be at increased risk. These people should seek advice about drinking water from their health care providers.
Two of the four testing locations are 61 Bukowski Place and 127 Evans Road.

Baristanet's report on the issue over the weekend has generated many comments fro residents as well as news that both Nutley and Montclair  have tested at lower levels from the same water system. Town Engineer Paul Lasek contributed some context for the report that cleared up a few concerns, but  Some questions remain:

How common are Bloomfield's water quality violations reported by the EPA?

Are the tests made inside homes or apartments?

Does our Health Department ever get involved? Isn't there expertese there regarding imune systems and poison control that might be useful?

Were notices mailed to renters or left in lobby? Aren't renters and their children more likely to have compromised immune systems.

Doesn't everyone have a different range of tolerance for toxins?

Are there medical tests that our health department could do to determine one's vulneribility to toxins?

Wouldn't it be more useful to post your current data so it could be be read straight up instead of sideways?

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