Some Fresno schools providing bottled water while water is tested for lead

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Bottled water coolers are in place at seven schools in Northeast Fresno while the water fountains are tested for lead. (KFSN)

Bottled water coolers are in place at seven schools in Northeast Fresno while the water fountains are tested for lead.

Concerns that Fresno's drinking water is corroding the pipes in some homes and causing lead contamination is prompting water testing in several schools. Those reports of rusty water in homes and possible lead contamination in plumbing throughout Northeast Fresno have parents like Nicole Garcia giving their children bottled water to take to school.

"Actually, every morning she goes with water to school in her backpack because I don't know, I don't trust any water even in the fountains. I don't really trust it."

So far there's been no reason not to trust the water at schools. Last spring six schools closest to the area where homes were experiencing corrosion were tested, no significant problems were found. Now testing is underway at the other seven schools in the area and bottled water coolers are on each campus.

"So we are doing the testing this week, water stations are available at the schools. They have been used lightly, not a huge demand for them. And then we are hoping to get the test results back as quickly as possible just so we can, again, have that data in hand if a parent has a question," said Kelly Avants, Clovis Unified Communications Director.

The results could take several weeks and parents we spoke with think it is a good idea.

"As far as our schools go they should test more intense for the lead. I think it would be a good idea. As far as the bottled water, they should definitely do that for our students," said Taryn Berlin, parent.

"Yeah, that's a good idea. It's a great idea actually, to be safe, with kids you can't be too safe," said Garcia.

The corrosion in home plumbing is believed to be related to a lack of adequate water treatment by the City of Fresno. Homeowners are beginning to file damage claims against the city. The school district is not experiencing the same problems.

"Nothing to give us any reason to believe that the tests we are doing this week are going to come back with any kind of concern," said Avants.

"Better to be safe than sorry for sure," said Berlin.

The schools where water coolers are available are Clovis West, Clovis North, Kastner Lincoln Mountain View, Maple Creek and the Education Center.
Related Topics:
newscontaminated waterfresnowaterschoolFresno - Northeast
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