BLOOMFIELD, NJ-- The Township of Bloomfield is announcing that recent tests of 35 homes found that four homes exhibited elevated lead levels, placing the township above state and federal lead guidelines. The tests showed a 90th percentile value of 16 parts per billion liters, which is above the federal lead action level of 15 parts per billion.

Mayor Michael Venezia will be holding a Public Meeting on Thursday, November 16 at 7:00 p.m. at Bloomfield High School Media Center, 2nd Floor, to discuss the findings and how residents can reduce their risk of lead exposure. Township engineers and officials from the Health Department will be on hand to answer any questions.

The lead testing was performed in recent months and looked at lead levels in individual homes, not in the township’s water system. NJ Department of Environmental Protection mandates require municipalities to issue public notices if tests show elevated lead levels. Township officials will continue to test lead levels over the next year and will be taking several steps to inform residents of the situation, including a public notice that will be mailed to all water system users.

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“The Township of Bloomfield and the Water Department take these findings very seriously and we are working to identify any potential issues in our water system,” said Paul D. Lasek, Township Engineer. “We will continue to test our system over the next twelve months and will be working with the State Department of Environmental Protection to respond to these findings.”

No cases of lead poisoning from contaminated water exposure have been reported in Bloomfield, and township schools were recently tested for lead and levels were below legal limits. The Bloomfield Health Department is encouraging residents to take steps to reduce their risk of lead exposure by flushing their faucets for 15-30 seconds before drinking water and using lead certified water filters.

“Lead exposure in drinking water is a serious issue and residents should be taking steps to reduce their risk,” said Karen Lore, Bloomfield Director of Health and Welfare. “Running water for 15-30 seconds before drinking, using cold water only for cooking and using water filtration devices are all simple things we can all do to make sure our families are protected.”

The Township is offering free lead tests to any resident concerned about their home’s lead level. Residents can schedule a test or get additional information by calling 973-680-4009.