House & Home

New EPA Rules on Fire Hydrants Start in January

Posted December 14, 2013

Many of us don't really plan on drinking from fire hydrants, although some of us do play in their spray on hot days. However, sometimes water from hydrants is diverted to homes as drinking water in emergencies, and for that reason, the EPA has taken an interest in what might be diverted along with that water: in this case, lead, which can be toxic in surprisingly low concentrations.

For that reason, it's requiring cities around the country to be more careful about how they handle repair and replacement of fire hydrants. Cleveland plumbers and others are gearing up for expensive fixes to keep fire hydrant water safe, a move the EPA says is necessary for public health, but Congress may put the kibosh in this plan. It claims the measure is "wasteful," and the House of Representatives just struck it down.

Whether cities will be forced to follow the regulation remains to be seen, but it's a good reminder to check on the safety of your water source!

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