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. 2019 Aug;26(24):25275-25285.
doi: 10.1007/s11356-019-05771-1. Epub 2019 Jun 29.

Survey of Lead Concentration in Tap Water on a University Campus

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Survey of Lead Concentration in Tap Water on a University Campus

Fu-Chun Chang et al. Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. .

Abstract

In this study, a sampling campaign was conducted for 29 buildings on the National Taiwan University (NTU) campus where lead pipes were present in 4 buildings. Total lead, soluble lead, and water quality parameters including pH, temperature, residual free chlorine, and total organic carbon were measured. Results from the first-round sequential sampling (10 × 100 mL) showed that the presence of lead pipe did not necessarily cause elevated lead levels. However, the highest lead concentration and the highest frequency of exceeding 10 μg/L were detected in a building with lead pipe. Faucet was identified to be a major lead source in at least 8 buildings. No significant correlations between lead levels and water parameters were found. The building showing the highest lead level in the first round was sampled for a second round using four different methods, namely, first draw sampling, random daytime sampling, sequential sampling (5 × 1 L), and flushing sampling. Lead levels in samples collected using the four sampling methods all exceeded 10 μg/L. The first draw sampling showed the highest lead level, followed by comparable levels for random daytime sampling and sequential sampling. Flush sampling yielded the lowest lead concentration. Particles collected from the faucet aerators in 14 buildings were also characterized for their compositions and lead contents.

Keywords: Lead; Plumbing materials; Sampling method; Tap water.

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