Lead in drinking water in DC schools

DC again has an issue with lead in drinking water -- this time, in several schools.

One fountain in a kindergarten classroom at Kenilworth showed lead levels of 1,200 parts per billion. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends that school water fountains be taken out of service if the lead level exceeds 20 parts per billion.

My guess is that it is leaching out of brass fittings.


Class Action Against D.C. Water and Sewer Authority Has Been Remanded To Superior Court

The class action against the D.C. Water and Sewer authority based on lead in the drinking water in the District has been remanded from federal court to D.C. Superior Court, on the grounds that there is no longer federal question jurisdiction.

The issue was whether the plaintiffs' negligence per se theory of liability, based on alleged violations of federal statutes or regulations, created federal question jurisdiction.  The Court held that it did not, because it was an alternative theory of liability.


Lead in D.C. Drinking Water -Update

The Washington Post today reported that Paul Hastings Janofsky is filing a class action in D.C. Superior Court against the District of Columbia and WASA arising out of the problem with lead in the drinking water.

Earlier the Post reported that the problem may not be limited to lead from lead service lines, but also may be the result of lead being leached from brass fixtures by chloramine used for water purification. And it probably is a problem with national scope.

Ironically, while this news is being greeted with shock and dismay in D.C., it is not exactly a new problem, e.g., this link shows that Philadelphia has recent experience with this problem.

The EPA has a website discussing lead in drinking water.

Later: The D.C. government has a web page with further information on the problem.