Mike Hopf, superintendent of the village water system that supplies water to all the Saugerties schools with the exception of Mount Marion, which receives is water from a private company, predicts the school district should find no problems when it conducts tests on the water at the schools.
The Blue Mountain Reservoir has been supplying water to the village since the 1880s and to the schools some time after that, Hopf said. There have never been problems with the quality of the water. Tests on the water are done on a regular basis. The quality has always been well within the Department of Environmental Conservation and the federal EPA guidelines for drinking water.
“We’ll be testing for lead and copper again this year,” Hopf said.
Older homes and buildings whose lines don’t come in from the street mains are probably still made of lead. The newer lines are made of cooper.
Hopf said the only problem that might be found at the schools — and it’s a very long shot — is that lead pipes used to bring water into the schools from the main service lines might have corroded and leached lead into the drinking supply. The village water system adds a non-hazardous, safe-to-consume chemical to the water that coats the inside of the lead and copper pipes, preventing metal from leaching into the system.
Schools superintendent Seth Turner’s call for water testing at the four elementary schools and high school/middle school campus comes after lead was found in the water system at schools in Newark, NJ, and the problems in Flint, Mich.