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One water well briefly showed slightly higher manganese levels in our drinking water in March. But it’s back to normal.

Carson City Public Works would like to provide some information on recent water quality testing that has reported a level of manganese above a certain (low) standard at one water well on the east side of Carson City.  But don’t panic!  For most water drinkers there are no significant effects.  But there could be ever-so-slight effects on newborns which one well, out of the city’s 30 well system, has produced a tiny increase of manganese.   But it’s since fallen back down to normal levels. 

The federal Environmental Protection Agency has established National Secondary Drinking Water Regulations (NSDWRs) that set non-mandatory water quality standards for 15 contaminants. EPA does not enforce these “secondary maximum contaminant levels” (SMCLs).  They are established as guidelines to assist public water systems in managing their drinking water for aesthetic considerations, such as taste, color, and odor. These contaminants are not considered to be a risk to human health at those levels.

Again, manganese may become noticeable in tap water at concentrations greater than 0.05 mg/L by color, odor, or taste to the water. However, health effects from manganese are not a concern until concentrations are approximately TEN TIMES HIGHER!  Again, the east side well is back to normal low manganese levels.

Although this is technically not an emergency, water customers have a right to know what happened. A flyer will be sent out to all customers in the next utility billing to help explain the matter in more detail.

What should I do?
City officials say you do not need to use an alternative water supply, like bottled water. You’d be surprised where bottled water comes from and the ingredients in it.  (But that’s another story.)  Manganese is of no concern as long as the city carefully monitors it and they will. However, if you have specific health concerns, which can be very common, consult your doctor.

What is being done?
The city is continuing to monitor for manganese monthly at the east well site. The past three months since March 2021, the levels have been meeting standards. For more information, please contact Eddy Quaglieri, Water Utility Manager, with Carson City Public Works at (775) 283-7395.

Visit carson.org/notice for FAQs and additional resources and information about Manganese. Please share this information with all the other people who drink this water, especially those who may not have received this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses).

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