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DEQ Testing Water Fountains At Older Schools For Lead

Drinking from water fountains in older school buildings may not be that refreshing for your health. 

The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality is in the early stages of a program to test some 7,000 school buildings throughout the state for lead in the drinking water.

Trevor Baggiore is the department’s deputy director for water quality. He says the first schools tested were built before 1987, when the use of lead was outlawed.

He says there’s a lack of data on water quality in schools and the amount of lead in drinking water was being served at schools.

"So, we decided to set some money aside and develop this project to identify — and eliminate — the risk to kids," Baggiore said.

Of results obtained so far from 118 schools already tested, 24 showed the presence of lead. But none have registered at a dangerous level.

The list of schools wanting to participate in the program has grown to about 1,200.