Wednesday, March 24, 2010
 
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Free drinking water nitrate screening at health fair

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[March 24, 2010]  Free nitrate screenings of drinking water will be available at the annual Lincoln Community Health Fair on Saturday. Since public water supplies are regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency, only water from private wells will qualify for the screening. The health fair is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Lincoln Park District Sports Center.

The Logan County Department of Public Health Division of Environmental Health will offer the nitrate screening.

Nitrate is a compound of oxygen and nitrogen that can be found in drinking water and at elevated levels can pose the greatest health threat to infants and women who are pregnant. Among sources of nitrate in drinking water are farmland fertilizer runoff, decaying plant debris, animal feedlots, sewage disposal systems and wastewater. It is not uncommon for well water to contain elevated levels of nitrates, and the best way to determine if your well contains high levels is to have it tested.

To qualify for screening, simply fill a clean, covered jar or container with tap water, at least 3 ounces, and bring it with you to the health departmentís environmental health booth at the fair. Your sample of water will be analyzed on-site. The screening will help determine if your well water is above or below the nitrate action level.

If your water screening indicates nitrates are at the action level, a water test kit will be provided to you at no cost.

For more information, contact the Logan County Department of Public Health at 217-735-2317.

[Text from file received from the Logan County Department of Public Health]

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