Health concerns arise after report reveals elevated lead levels in Wicomico Co. schools

Water plays a crucial role in our day to day lives, and that is why recent water testing at some Wicomico County Public Schools is raising concerns.

Officials say Fruitland Primary School and East Salisbury Elementary were both found to have water sources that have exceeded the amount of lead deemed safe by the state. 

"We don't have any idea how long those have been at that benchmark level," said the Wicomico County Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Donna Hanlin. 

On Monday officials notified parents of the elevated lead levels, but they tell 47 ABC they actually found out about it on May 23rd.

They say they had 10 days in which they had to notify parents of the contaminated water.

They would not say why they waited until the 10th day to release the information.

Officials did say that they shut down the contaminated water sources immediately.

"We want to make sure that our students and staff are safe and that we're following law," said Hanlin. 

The testing is all a part of new state regulations.

They have a timeline in which they are required to test all schools drinking outlets for lead levels, the first round including those built before 1988.

That deadline is July 1st.

"As soon as those regulations were provided to us, we had that guidance of what we were required to do we took immediate action, and we've begun to test all of our schools," said Hanlin.

School officials would not comment on the possible health concerns related to ingesting higher levels on lead. 

In a memo to parents they said, "If you are concerned about lead exposure, contact your local health department or healthcare provider to find out how you can get your child tested for lead."

School officials say they will continue to test the water at area schools as mandated by the State; however, they say they are well ahead of the deadlines.

Categories: Local News, Maryland