TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) -- A Shawnee Co. Rural Water District remains in violation of state government standards for disinfection by-products in its drinking water, according to the Kansas Dept. of Health and Environment. The agency notes that despite exceeding mandated levels, no boil orders or advisories have been issued nor is there an immediate risk to customers.
“This is not something out of the ordinary – we do see this in other communities,” KDHE spokesperson Kristi Pankratz said.
The violations cover Rural Water District #1C, which spans much of the area west of Topeka, south of the river, and extends into Auburn. The violations were for the amount of haloacetic acids. HAAs, as well as other disinfection by-products, result from when disinfectants like chlorine are added to drinking water and react with the organic matter in it.
KDHE explains that while there is no danger from short-term exposure, the Environmental Protection Agency says drinking water an excess of HAAs over many years could lead to an increased risk of cancer.
HAA levels have dropped for the past two quarters, KDHE says. However, an average of the four previous quarters is used to determine if a district is in violation. Therefore, even if the next round of testing finds levels below the 60 ug/L required, the violations will remain in effect unless the running average for the past year drops under that threshold.