Tuesday, July 06, 2004

 

Lead levels high in NMSU water

By James W. Brosnan
Scripps Howard News Service

WASHINGTON - The Environmental Protection Agency has found above-normal levels of lead in drinking water at a student-housing complex at New Mexico State University, triggering an investigation and more testing by the state and the university.

Monitoring in 2003 found lead levels as high as 73 parts per billion in 25 of 60 units tested in the Vista Del Monte complex on the south part of the Las Cruces campus. That's almost five times the level of 15 parts per billion that requires action to correct the problem. Each unit contains four apartments.

The lead levels are not believed to present an acute health risk, but chronic exposure to lead can harm fetuses and small children, said Jon Goldstein, spokesman for the New Mexico Environment Department.

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