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News Release

For more information contact:
Chris Laverack at 607-274-6688

Free Lead Testing Pilot Program: $1.5 Million State Program to Test Residential Drinking Water

(ITHACA, N.Y., March 7, 2017) — The New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) announced that it is launching a pilot program to test lead in drinking water. The program is available to residents that are served by either a private well or public water system. The program is free of charge to residents, allowing everyone to have access to lead testing if they choose. The program began in February 2017 and will continue as long as funds are available.

Residents who are interested in testing their tap water are encouraged to sign up on the NYSDOH website or by calling the Bureau of Water Supply Protection at 518-402-7650. Individuals who request testing will choose a participating laboratory that will provide containers and directions to draw two samples. The samples will be mailed to the lab where they will be processed and the results will be sent directly to the residents.

The purpose of the Free Lead Testing Pilot Program is to encourage individuals to take appropriate action if a source of lead in drinking water is identified. Lead is a toxic metal that is particularly harmful to the developing brain and nervous system of children under six and pregnant women. Lead is found throughout our environment, but the primary source of lead exposure in homes continues to be through old and deteriorated paint. The free water testing program will allow residents to make informed decisions about their drinking water to best protect the health of their families.

Full website with sign up and list of participating laboratories:

For more resources on Lead Poisoning Prevention: