Test results: Henry's water within state, federal guidelines

By Valerie Baldowski


The latest test results show that Henry County's drinking water is clean and safe.

The 2009 water-quality report confirms that the Henry County Water and Sewerage Authority is in compliance with state and federal drinking water quality standards.

Last year, the authority performed more than 200,000 tests on drinking water.

"The figures are based on water-quality lab data collected during calendar year 2009, which is the most recent data available for a formalized report," said Chris Wood, public information officer for the water authority.

There were 0.110 parts per million (ppm) of copper in the water samples tested. The maximum amount of copper allowed is 1.3 ppm, he said. There were 2.5 parts per billion (ppb) of lead in the water tested. The maximum amount of lead allowed is 15 ppb.

There was also 0.87 ppm of fluoride found in the water samples. The maximum amount of fluoride allowed is 4 ppm. Additionally, the water samples tested had 2.13 ppm of chlorine. The maximum amount of chlorine allowed is 4 ppm.

Water authority personnel constantly strive to stay in compliance with federal and state regulators, said David Whitson, division manager for water, wastewater, and reservoirs for the authority. "There are many federal and state standards that we must meet," he said. "This is, and always has been, a challenge. It's like hitting a moving target, as they annually revise and add to the compliance requirements.

"Although a challenge, we have never had a problem maintaining compliance with any water quality standards. Compliance standards have been met since the first water treatment facility -- the Towaliga facility -- was constructed in 1976," he said.

Water employees do their best to maintain clean water, added Lindy Farmer, the authority's general manager, in a press release. "Our employees work diligently to produce and distribute high-quality drinking water to our customers throughout the year, while ensuring that we meet, or exceed, all federal and state drinking water standards," said Farmer. "I'm pleased that this year's annual report of 2009 water quality data shows no violations of drinking water standards, or problems with our water quality."