High lead levels found in some Ferndale water samples, free filter kits available

The Oakland County Health Department will be giving out free water filter kits in Ferndale after high levels of lead were recently found in water samples. 

The department was notified by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) that water samples in Ferndale have lead levels in the drinking water exceeding state standards. 

The samples were taken during routine testing that's required under Michigan’s Safe Drinking Water Act.

Samples from 31 properties with known lead service lines were collected, five of which were found to have high lead levels. 

Ferndale said the city's 90th percentile value was 30 ppb (parts per billion). The safe level established by the Safe Drinking Water Act is 15 ppb.

The city says the excessive lead level is a result of more-rigorous sampling procedures and focuses on properties with lead service lines.

In response to these results, city officials will increase both the frequency of monitoring and the number of sites tested.

Meanwhile, free water filter kits will be given to Ferndale residents who qualify on Oct. 28, 3:00 - 6:00 p.m. at the Gary Kulick Community Center (1201 Livernois St, Ferndale, MI 48220).

To qualify for a filter the household must:

  • Receive water from an affected area
  • Have a pregnant woman or at least one child under age 18 living or spending several hours in the home weekly, AND who receives WIC benefits, Medicaid health insurance, or has difficulty affording a filter ($35) or replacement cartridges ($15)

You can also see other steps you can take at home to reduce your exposure to lead here.