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The following Public Notice is intended to provide information and recommendations for Citizens in West Point regarding recent testing of drinking water samples for manganese.

As mentioned before we had our water tested in our drinking fountains. We just received preliminary results from the State Drinking Water Division at DHHS.  We were told that our drinking fountains with filters are removing manganese to below 300 micrograms per liter, so the water is safe to drink for all ages. We will ensure that all filters are changed at frequent intervals to ensure that things stay that way. Students should know that a “green” indicator on the fountain shows that the filter is working. If it turns “yellow” the filter needs changed and you should not drink water from the fountain. Below is the notice posted on the city's website. 

 

The following public notice is intended to provide information and recommendations for citizens in West Point regarding recent testing of drinking water samples for manganese.

Water samples were collected by the City of West Point this summer that show that levels of manganese exceed 1,000 micrograms of manganese per liter of water. Manganese is a naturally occurring mineral found in soil, rock, food, and water. It is an essential nutrient required for many body functions, from the digestion and metabolism of nutrients to supporting bone health. The typical U.S. diet contains between 2,000-7,000 micrograms of manganese per day and the Food and Drug Administration recommends 2,000 micrograms (equivalent to 2 milligrams) of manganese per day for those 4 years of age and older. Manganese is commonly found in drinking water sources at levels around 50 micrograms per liter, however, levels above this can have an off taste, color, or odor, and cause staining in sinks or on laundry.

Although manganese is naturally occurring and an essential nutrient at low levels, exposure to high levels may be associated with adverse central nervous system effects, particularly for formula-fed infants. Infants not only have a developing nervous system but higher absorption and lower excretion of manganese than older children or adults do, so they are more sensitive to the effects of high levels of manganese. 

Manganese is not regulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act but the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency does have a lifetime health advisory for manganese of 300 micrograms per liter. This level is considered to be protective of even the most vulnerable in the population, formula-fed infants. Drinking water with levels greater than 300 micrograms per liter, however, should not be used for preparing formula for infants. Filtered or bottled water should be used.

In the West Point community, however, it is recommended that ALL citizens use filtered or bottled water for drinking until such time as the newly proposed manganese treatment plant is up and running. This notice is for drinking water only, as the goal is not to remove all exposure to this essential nutrient but to minimize your exposure to high levels. If you are interested in more information about testing or treating your drinking water for manganese, please see engineer information below. 

The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Service did approve the Layne Ox Filtration System pilot study. At a special meeting the City Council did authorize ordering the filters, while the units are being constructed Advance Consulting Engineering Services will be finalizing plans and specifications to be submitted to the Nebraska Department of Health for final approval. The plans and specification have not been submitted to HHS.

 

Sue Dempsey, MS CPH |                      Administrator                                                                                                       

West Point Light & Water     

DRINKING WATER DIVISION       402-372-2466

Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services

OFFICE: 402-471-0510 | FAX: 402-471-6436

 

Bill McAllister, Superintendent of West Point Public Schools

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