None of the 36 water systems operating in La Plata County have exceeded federal lead limits since 2013, but two systems reported spikes from samples taken in 2012.
According to data maintained by the Environmental Protection Agency, the Glacier Club and Durango West II Metropolitan District each had one water sample that exceeded the federal action limit of 15 parts per billion in their most recent sample periods.
In both cases, the spikes were isolated to one household as opposed to the entire water system or a section of the water system. Further testing was required, but once the high readings were isolated to individual homes, no further action was required.
The city of Durango, which operates the largest water system in the county, has not had any detectable lead in its water samples since at least 1992, according to EPA data.
A water sample taken in 2012 from a home in Durango West II subdivision, which serves 930 people, registered 45 parts per billion of lead.
Tyler Whitt, district water and wastewater operator, said a couple of residents installed water softeners, which increases the likelihood of elements being leached from plumbing inside the house, especially if faucets contain lead. Property owners with water softeners were notified of the high readings, he said.
There are no lead pipes in the ground and no lead coming from the source well, he said.
To reduce the threat of tainted water, residents with water softeners can run water for 30 to 60 seconds before drawing drinking water, he said.
A similar situation occurred with the Glacier Club water system, which serves about 525 people.
The district did its regular testing in September 2012 at five locations specified by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. One of the five homes had a high reading for lead, said Dave Harris, attorney for the Glacier Club.
“Prior to this incident, we’ve never had a lead-related incident, and subsequent to it, we’ve never had a lead-related violation,” he said.
After the high reading, the district went back to the residence and tested the same faucet and a different faucet. The faucet that was high in September 2012 was still high, but the other faucet inside the house was 87 percent lower for lead, Harris said.
“Our conclusion was clearly the faucet that had the higher lead content had some lead solder in it,” he said.
The Glacier Club notified all water users of the high test result and talked to the homeowner about the aberrational results.
“We strongly recommended that she change out that faucet,” Harris said.
He added: “This is way out of the norm, and it has never reoccurred.”
|Water system||Population served||Most recent sample period||Sort||Most recent sample result (ppb)||Total times over limit since 2013||Total times over limit since 1992||Total samples taken since 1992|
|DURANGO WEST MD NO 2||930||7/01/12 - 12/31/12||36||45 over limit||0||1||8|
|GLACIER CLUB||525||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||35||19 over limit||0||1||9|
|LILLY BELLE||30||1/01/11 - 6/30/11||34||10 under limit||0||1||6|
|DURANGO 9R SUNNYSIDE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL||126||1/01/11 - 12/31/11||33||10 under limit||0||1||8|
|UTE PASS WA INC||120||1/01/11 - 12/31/11||32||8 under limit||0||5|
|PURGATORY MD||1,225||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||31||7 under limit||0||1||8|
|ANIMAS WC||2,720||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||30||6 under limit||0||8|
|LOS RANCHITOS HOA||84||1/01/07 - 12/31/07||29||5.7 under limit||0||6|
|PINE RIVER MDCA||31||1/01/14 - 12/31/16||28||5.4 under limit||0||3|
|HOMESTEAD TRAILS||174||1/01/09 - 12/31/09||27||5.3 under limit||0||5|
|SIERRA VERDE WATER CO LLC||37||1/01/08 - 12/31/10||26||4.7 under limit||0||7|
|FALLS CREEK RANCH NO 1||110||1/01/08 - 12/31/10||25||4 under limit||0||9|
|DURANGO 9 R FLORIDA MESA SCHOOL||400||1/01/11 - 12/31/11||24||4 under limit||0||1||8|
|MOUNTAIN VISTA MHP||70||1/01/06 - 12/31/06||23||3.2 under limit||0||9|
|BAYFIELD TOWN OF||2,300||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||22||3 under limit||0||8|
|DURANGO NORTH VILLAGE||150||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||21||3 under limit||0||8|
|EL RANCHO FLORIDA MD||400||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||20||3 under limit||0||8|
|FALLS CREEK RANCH NO 2||74||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||29||3 under limit||0||1||10|
|ROSA JOINT VENTURES WATER SYSTEM||210||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||18||2.3 under limit||0||3|
|IGNACIO TOWN OF||1,700||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||17||2 under limit||0||6|
|TALL PINES VILLAGE||65||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||16||2 under limit||0||9|
|MESA VERDE NATIONAL PARK||3,478||1/01/11 - 6/30/11||15||2 under limit||0||1||9|
|DURANGO 9 R FT LEWIS MESA ELEM SCHOOL||184||1/01/11 - 12/31/11||14||2 under limit||0||2||9|
|HAPPY SCENES WS INC||129||1/01/11 - 12/31/11||13||2 under limit||0||3|
|HEARTWOOD CO OP HOUSING||75||1/01/06 - 12/31/06||12||1.3 under limit||0||6|
|SOUTHWEST HORIZON RANCH||323||1/01/06 - 12/31/06||11||1.3 under limit||0||5|
|IGNACIO-SOUTHERN UTE RURAL WATER SYSTEM||2,300||1/01/13 - 12/31/15||10||1 under limit||0||6|
|LAKE DURANGO WA||2,800||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||9||1 under limit||0||8|
|LAPLATA VISTA ESTATES HOA||68||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||8||1 under limit||0||3||11|
|VALLECITO VALLEY SUBD||138||1/01/11 - 12/31/11||7||1 under limit||0||5|
|LAKE MEADOWS MHP||105||1/01/11 - 12/31/19||6||0.54 under limit||0||6|
|NARROW GAUGE MHP||150||1/01/07 - 12/31/07||5||0.1 under limit||0||8|
|DURANGO CITY OF||23,069||1/01/14 - 12/31/16||4||0 under limit||0||10|
|KNOLLS AT DURANGO HOA||150||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||3||0 under limit||0||7|
|LIGHTNER CREEK MHP||90||1/01/11 - 12/31/13||2||0 under limit||0||1||10|
|DURANGO LA PLATA AIRPORT||780||1/01/11 - 12/31/11||1||0 under limit||0||7|
Source: AP/Environmental Protection Agency