A recent Asheville Citizen Times story is raising concerns with it's headline, "Is your water safe to drink". With such a sensational headline, some Waynesville water customers have called with concerns and inquiries regarding additional lead testing. To reiterate a point that was minimally touched on in their story; Waynesville has exceptionally high water quality, and Waynesville's water quality staff have absolutely no concerns about lead poisoning from Town water lines. Specifically, as recently as 2014, Waynesville commissioned a water study by Martin McGill Associates. In their study, Martin McGill found no lead water lines exist in the Waynesville municipal water system. To restate; there are no known lead lines within the Waynesville water system.
The Asheville Citizen Times story correctly stated that municipal water systems participate in federally mandated lead testing; however, that is only part of the story. The primary reason lead testing is required is that infiltration concerns exist from private home and business plumbing, whose water line materials and parts are suspect (or even unknown) and may indeed contain lead. The lead testing is designed to provide a buffer and safeguard between Waynesville water customers and these suspect private water lines. Waynesville has additional mechanisms to provide further safeguards to our water customers.
What didn't make the Asheville Citizen Times story is that every single water line in the Town of Waynesville water system is tested to ensure it is safe to drink before it is ever connected to a customer’s home or business. This testing is completed by certified staff separate and above from the staff completing the water line repair or installation work. Additionally, the Town of Waynesville requires backflow prevention devices, and private certification statements on installed devices designed to prevent private water from back flowing into the Waynesville water system. These additional measures are intended to safeguard the Town system from smaller private home and business plumbing that the Town may not have much knowledge of.
If Waynesville water customers have water quality concerns, please contact the Waynesville Public Services Department at 456-3706. We will gladly test the water quality to ensure the clean water we produce is what's reaching our customers. If citizens would like some additional reassurances regarding lead or other testing of their private water lines; Town staff can provide contact information for services who will perform the private testing for them.
The Town of Waynesville has some of the highest quality water in the entire nation, and we're committed to addressing any anxieties regarding water quality (real or perceived) that may cause Waynesville customers concern.