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(Toledo News Now) -
The City of Toledo is letting citizens know that they'll increase testing of the water in the wake of elevated toxin levels elsewhere in northwest Ohio.
The Ohio EPA issued a notice Thursday, warning residents in Carroll Township to avoid drinking township water.
It's still safe for Toledo residents to drink the water or cook with it, but it's quality has reached a questionable level and the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency of Ohio has been notified.
Lake Erie has high levels of blue/green algae.
Technicians at Toledo's water treatment plant have discovered that's producing microcystin, a toxin. It's a bit higher than what the city and Ohio EPA like to see.
"We're taking action right now to add chlorine to take care of it, monitor it, keep an eye on the levels," said Toledo Public Utilities Director David Welch.
For now, there's nothing to worry about in Toledo.
"We'll keep an eye on it," Welch said. "If it gets to that point, we'll issue that advisory. We don't see that happening."
City officials say the additional chemical treatment costs about $3,000 a day. That's money the city normally banks to repair broken water lines, but officials say it's well worth the cost to keep the water safe.
The press release from the city says:
The City of Toledo routinely tests for microcystin in water and in light of elevated levels in nearby communities has begun increased testing of treated water. Under Ohio Environmental Protection Agency standards microcystin levels at or above 0.25 ng/L (ppt) must be reported but are safe for drinking, cooking, and regular use. Microcystin levels at or above 1.0 ng/L (ppt) are not safe for drinking or food preparation.
The most recent tests of Toledo water detect a 0.42ng/L (ppt) microcystin level. The city has reported this level to the Ohio EPA. The water remains safe to drink and the city continues to test the microcystin levels. The Department of Public Utilities has proactively increased permanganate, chlorine, alum and carbon feeds and has decreased filter run time to further reduce the microcystin.