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Fort Wayne Collects & Tests More than 900 Consumer Water Samples in 5 Months

Fort Wayne, IN, USA
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120Water
Contact Partner

Goverment Champion

City Utilities

Cost

Initial:
20 Thousand USD

Project Status

Operational since 2019

Keywords

water quality
water
Lead Testing
LSLR
Lead

Challenges Addressed

Water Quality
Air Quality, Health, Noise
Buildings
Customer Service
Process Improvement

Motivation

Smart city
Equitable city

Funding / Financing

General Fund/Existing Public Funds

Project Type

Technology
Tool
Service

At a Glance

The City of Fort Wayne, IN used a combination of software & automated testing kits to identify and prioritize households as part of their Lead Service Line Inventory & Replacement Program, testing more than 900 samples.

Problem Addressed

The City of Fort Wayne wanted to test 1000 locations to map high-lead neighborhoods for the pilot phase of their LSLR program and needed a solution to provide testing kits to consumers. However, they faced three key challenges in the process: logistical problems in manually dropping of kits, low return rates, and the struggle to get opt-ins for the LSLR program - preventing progress in the effort to reduce lead in the city's drinking water system. The city team recognized that the biggest obstacle was relaying information and educating residents to get samples filled and returned properly.

Fort Wayne used/is using 120Water's cloud-software, automated kits, and services team to address this/these challenge(s).

Solution(s) Used

To address that challenge, Fort Wayne partnered with 120Water to handle resident communication, kit fulfillment, and data collection. In order to test an appropriate number of locations to get the data needed for the LSLR program, they started with a list of 5000 residents with the intent of communicating with them directly to send sample kits & analyze results. Fort Wayne used 120Water to communicate with residents and automate the kit process. Flyers and mailers were sent to all residents and City Utilities had a page on their website dedicated to educating visitors on the project. City Utilities provided 120Water with locations, and their fulfillment team handled the mailing of kits to all residents. Their services team reached out to homeowners on behalf of Fort Wayne, getting verbal acknowledgment of their participation prior to mailing a kit, and following up to ensure they properly filled out their sample.

Outcomes

  1. 938 Samples Collected and Tested: 120Water automated sending and collecting samples to all residents who agreed to participate.
  2. Sample Return Rate Doubled: Using 120Water's services team to communicate with residents doubled the number of samples that were returned.
  3. Centralized Results Data: The data collected from this project gave sufficient result information and statistics for future testing events to assist Fort Wayne in their LSLR planning.
  4. Simple Audit Trail of Program: Fort Wayne's Program Head Engineer was able to utilize data captured by 120Water to create his proposal and final report for the year

Who Should Consider?

This combination of software, hardware, and services can help any size water system looking to manage a Lead Service Line Program, automating sampling and ensuring increased participation.

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