The Delta School District is committed to the health and safety of all its students and staff.
At the request of the Provincial Health Officer via the Ministry of Education to all school districts in the Province, the Delta School District has established a plan to evaluate water quality in Delta schools, implement a mitigation strategy and address challenges.
Our District took a pro-active approach to this request and implemented cross-district water testing in April.
- Early test findings showed pre-flush (and one post-flush account) of higher than acceptable lead amounts in drinkable water sources from the initial test sites. Read more about early testing here
- As a part of our Water Quality Plan, district staff then conducted extensive testing in our older (pre-1989) facilities.
- These test results can be viewed here
The District will act on any concerns and communicate to schools and parents and update our Facilities webpage with new information as it comes in.
Facts & FAQS
HOW DID LEAD GET IN THE WATER?
Our buildings built prior to 1989 have copper piping. Standard practice was to externally solder pipes with a compound that included lead.
There are no lead pipes in the Delta School District water system. But like most buildings older than 1989, there is lead in the solder.
In 1989, the BC Plumbing Code restricted the use of lead components in solder in all new building water pipes.
For information about water quality in in other community systems in Delta, go to the Fraser Health Authority website: http://www.healthspace.ca/fha/drinkingwater
IS DELTA WATER SAFE?
The water quality in Delta is some the best in the world. Like most residents and districts in the Lower Mainland, the Corporation of Delta receives the majority of its water from the Seymour watershed. Seymour source water is filtered and disinfected with UV light, and sodium hypochlorite for primary and secondary disinfection, respectively; lime is added to increase pH and alkalinity while CO2 is added to adjust pH.
It is not considered “soft water”.
WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO SCHOOL FOUNTAINS AND FAUCETS?
Currently, schools are undertaking preventative measures, which includes running water for a couple of minutes at all drinking sources each morning to mitigate any trace of any potential contaminants in the water.
Fountains or faucets where students and/or staff may access drinking water, and where post-flush results are above acceptable levels have been removed from service1.
Facilities staff is evaluating all drinking water locations to determine appropriate measures for remediation. These measures may include any or all of the following:
- New water lines/pipes to the potable water fixtures;
- Installation of new drinking fountains, bottle filling stations and/or faucets at potable water sinks;
- Installation of fountain filtration systems;
- Installation of automatic flushing devices;
- Removal of the fountain/sink—where it is underutilized;
- Installation of signage at drinking fountains instructing users to run water for 90 seconds before drinking until such time that the unit and/or piping is replaced.
In the interim, water lines to drinking sources will be flushed daily by morning openers and administrators (at elementary schools) day custodians (at secondary schools).
For the most recent updates and details on findings on this issue please go to:
HOW WILL THESE UPGRADES AND REPAIRS BE FUNDED?
The Delta School District will be looking into options for all repairs and upgrades. Once an overall plan is in created that addresses the unique needs of each specific location, staff will share this information with trustees, parents and stakeholders.
Costs to upgrade and repair the drinkable water sources will be managed through the Delta School District.
For the most recent updates and details on findings on this issue please go to: http://facilities.deltasd.bc.ca/water-quality
1 Removed from service – water has been shut off to this source and/or the source has been covered with a large plastic bag. Signage is in place to discontinue use.