Is La Crosse water safe?
Water scare in eastern Wisconsin
The water contamination crisis in Flint, Mich. has caused many Americans to become more concerned about hazardous materials in tap water.
Government testing has found unusually high levels of the metal strontium in well water throughout eastern Wisconsin – cities near Lake Michigan – especially near Green Bay and Milwaukee.
It’s not, however, a problem in the La Crosse area.
Four parts per million in a liter of water is a danger level being measured by the EPA.
“Most of our maximum containment levels for metals are down in the parts per billion, not parts per million,” La Crosse water utility manager Mark Johnson.
Johnson says his department’s routine testing rarely uncovers possibly hazardous metals.
“Arsenic and chromium and nickel, things like that,” Johnson said, “we have gotten detox for those, but none of those have every been anywhere close to the so-called maximum contaminate levels.”
Strontium has been blamed for some bone diseases, including cancer. Its most common use in recent years has been in older-model television picture tubes.