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Point of Use Drinking Water Testing for Lead and Copper Rule (LCR) Compliance, Lead Service Line Replacement (LSLR) and Customer Request Programs

Pittsburgh, PA, USA
120Water

Government Champion

Pittsburgh Water & Sewer Authority, Pittsburgh Mayors Office

Cost

Initial:
600 Thousand USD
Maintenance:
600 Thousand USD

Project Status

Operational since 2017

At a Glance

LCR Compliance, Lead Service Line Replacement and Customer Requests exponentially increased the number of point of use water quality tests the Pittsburgh Water & Sewer Authority needed to execute.120WaterAudit's software, kits and services helped PWSA execute these tests effectively and transparently.

Problem Addressed

Due to their recent string of Lead and Copper Compliance Program exceedances, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection ordered PWSA to replace 7% of the roughly 18,000 to 33,000 lead service lines existing within their customer base yearly. With anywhere between 1,260 and 2,310 replacements - and, in turn, point-of-use tests - taking place yearly, this program put an immense amount of strain on an already struggling organization.

As is true with their Lead and Copper Copper Compliance (LCR) and Customer Lead Testing Request (CR) programs, PWSA’s Lead Service Line Replacement testing program (LSLR) required immense amounts of manpower. Particular challenges presented around:

• Disparate, siloed data sources: current and historical GIS and on-site inspection and survey data, service line replacement data, and water quality sampling results data.

• Water Testing Kit delivery and pickup

• Lab coordination

• Analysis, aggregation, and distribution of results.

Pittsburgh Water & Sewer Authority used/is using 120WaterAudit's Software, Point of Use Testing Solutions, and Services to address this/these challenge(s).

Solution(s) Used

By working with 120WaterAudit, the Pittsburgh Water & Sewer Authority execute their lead sampling events efficiently while keeping up with the exponential growth of lead sampling needs across their water quality programs. Encouraging the public to take advantage of the free water tests provided by PWSA was one of the near-term goals which would provide more detailed data about their water infrastructure to use in conjunction with their Lead Service Line Replacement program.

Outcomes

  1. Water testing sample turnaround time went from 4 Months to 14 Days
  2. 80% Savings on Cost of Sample Kits
  3. Enabled 24 Hour Electronic Customer Notification of Results
  4. Real-time Water Quality Monitoring of Lead Data to inform Infrastructure and Remediation Programs

Something Unique

The City of Pittsburgh created an incentive for lead testing requests by offering free tests and filters. Testing at scale was an essential first step in helping the city map their lead service lines as they prioritize LSLR investments. http://pittsburghpa.gov/safepgh2o/

Who Should Consider?

Public Water Utilities who are struggling to keep up with new Lead and Copper Rule regulations and increased customer requests for water tests need to work from a centralized database for their lead programs.

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