City of Genesee issues drinking water warning
GENESEE, ID —
Genesee received test results Monday morning that water from one of their wells tested positive for nitrates.
"The MCL, maximum contaminant level for nitrates is 10. 4 milligrams per liter the result on this test was 11 milligrams per liter,” Dustin Brinkly City Maintenance Supervisor said.
The Environmental Protection Agency Handbook says levels under 20 mg isn't hazardous.
Some residents should not drink the water.
" Infants six months and under it inhibits the red bloods cells ability to carry and deliver oxygen,” said Brinkly.
Pregnant women should also not drink the water.
City officials say not to boil the water either because it'll only increase the concentration of the toxin.
They have an idea how this toxin could have possible seeped into the water.
"It's assumed that it's a byproduct of agricultural operations in the area," Brinkley said.
According to the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality this isn’t the first time Genesee’s water have showed signs of the toxin. This particular well has been on their radar since 2011. In 2013 and 2014 initials samples showed levels above the maximum range. When follow-up samples were taken the levels had decreased.
City Hall officials tells us the well is currently shut off and they'll continue to take samples every week. Once it's cleared, the well will be turned back on.
"The ultimate fix, the long term fix is going to be a new well the nitrates have slowly been climbing at this well site," Brinkly said.