Water Works Recent Pipe Letter and What It Means
Hamilton Township Mayor Kelly Yaede recognizes the
possible confusion that the recent letter from Trenton Water Works may cause
residents, which is why we are providing this update.
Mayor Yaede understands the frustration that our
community has experienced with Trenton Water; and while several ongoing efforts
to continue to address these various issues - Mayor Yaede is fighting to get
the City of Trenton to better explain this program so that all residents can,
at the very least, make an informed decision
that is their best interest.
Information, Extended Deadline
it is important to know that Mayor Yaede recently wrote Trenton Mayor Eric
Jackson to request two important actions:
Hold Public Information Sessions
to Better Explain the Trenton Water Program Offer (Mayor Yaede has also offered
to assist organizing such a public session in Hamilton)
To extend the deadline until
AFTER these public sessions
Pipes, Who Is Responsible for Repairs?
common reaction to the recent letter is “why would I need to pay to fix Trenton
Water Works pipes?” It is important to understand
these 3 portions of the water system:
The water treatment plant and the Main
Main Water Lines typically run underneath the road
This includes a “Connection Area” where residents’ lateral pipes
connect to the Main Water Lines
c. This portion is maintained by Trenton Water
Lateral Pipes (referred to as “lead
service line” in letter)
Lateral Pipes extend from residents’ homes and connect to the main
These pipes are the property of
each homeowner; and therefore, are not
maintained by Trenton Water
Internal Pipes and Fixtures Within
a. These are also the property of each homeowner
Trenton Water Works Offering?
Water Works letter is offering to property owners is a price to replace the Lateral Pipes (which is the property of
homeowners) during the time in which they will be replacing Main Lines and Connection areas (which Trenton Water is responsible for).
Why Letter Discusses
Increased Lead Levels?
Water Works is advising residents that when they replace Connection areas that they are responsible for (referred to in the
letter as a “partial replacement” if a
property owner is not also replacing their Lateral Pipe at the same time),
lead can be disturbed and temporarily increase lead levels in your drinking water.
Where Does the
Lead Come From?
Typically – although
each individual case may be different -- lead tends to enter water supplies
from Lateral Pipes or Internal Pipes and Fixtures Within Your
Home (which again, are both portions that are a homeowner’s property
and which they are responsible for). This
may be more prevalent for homes built before the late 1980’s, due to the
materials used up to that time.
This is what the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection states about lead
in drinking water:
not normally found in drinking water at the source. Typically, lead gets
into your drinking water from the service lines, plumbing and fixtures that
contain lead. As a result of corrosion, lead and other metals from the
pipes slowly dissolve into the water. Many factors affect the amount of
lead that leaches into the water, including lead content of pipes, fixtures,
and solder, along with water temperature, pH and hardness.
Where Can I Get
More Information on Lead in Water?
are two beneficial resources:
1) New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (which regulates the water
quality of Trenton Water Works and all water providers): http://www.state.nj.us/dep/watersupply/dwc-lead-consumer.html
2) Brochure from the New Jersey State Department of Health: http://www.nj.gov/health/ceohs/documents/dw_lead_factsheet.pdf
Can I Test My
Yes, residents can test their water. Although there is a cost to you to do so,
residents can either contact Trenton Water Works or can investigate home or private
lead testing options.
How Can I Reduce
Exposure to Lead in Water?
this is from the New Jersey Department
of Environmental Protection:
Exposure to lead at any level can be associated
with adverse health effects. Therefore, consider taking the following
steps to reduce your exposure to lead in drinking water.
- Run your water to flush out lead. Run water for 15-30 seconds or until it becomes
cold or reaches a steady temperature before using it for drinking or
cooking, if it hasn’t been used for several hours. This flushes
lead-containing water from the pipes.
- Use cold water for cooking and preparing baby formula. Do not cook with or drink water from the hot
water tap; Lead dissolves more quickly into hot water. Do not use
water from the hot water tap to make baby formula.
your water system or certified drinking water laboratory to
have your home drinking water tested for lead. (Please note that the
homeowner may be responsible for any costs.)
- Do not boil water to remove lead. Boiling water will not reduce lead.
- Use alternate sources or treatment of water. You may want to consider using bottled water
for drinking and cooking or a water filter designed to remove lead.
Read the package to be sure the filter is approved to reduce lead or
contact NSF International at 800-NSF-8010 or www.nsf.org for
information on performance standards for water filters. Be sure to
maintain and replace a filter device in accordance with the manufacturer’s
standards to ensure water quality.
- Get your child tested. Contact your local health department or
healthcare provider to find out how you can get your child tested for lead
if you are concerned about lead exposure.
the Hamilton Township Municipal Government was not involved in the procurement
process of this Trenton Water Works program offer, unfortunately, our
government cannot provide information regarding the price range, nor can our
government suggest or recommend whether a homeowner should participate.
please know that Mayor Yaede has continued to actively monitor developments
with Trenton Water Works through communication with the New Jersey Department
of Environmental Protection and other officials. This will continue, along with the monitoring
of the Administrative Consent Order that the New Jersey Department of
Environmental Protection signed with Trenton Water Works earlier this year.