Cancer causing chemicals found in Los Osos water
January 19, 2016
Los Osos Community Services District officials sent a notice out this week warning residents that the levels of Hexavalent Chromium in the drinking water were found to be above the drinking water standard. Hexavalent Chromium is the same chemical found in the water in Hinkley, and brought to the public’s attention by environmental activist Erin Brockovich.
Hexavalent Chromium, also commonly known as Chromium-6, has been known to cause cancer when inhaled. In recent scientific studies in laboratory animals, Hexavalent Chromium has also been linked to cancer when ingested.
A water sample taken on Dec. 7 showed levels of Hexavalent Chromium at 11 micrograms, The maximum contaminate level is 10 micrograms. The district responded by stopping pumping from the contaminated well and increasing pumping at the district’s remaining wells.
According to the district, water users would have been notified immediately if the chemical posed an immediate health risk and that there is no reason for residents to seek alternative water sources.
Nevertheless, the district is required by law to inform school, nursing homes and residential and business property owners of the water contamination within 10 days of discovering the chemical in the district’s drinking water.
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