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Water Treatment Plant
The water treatment plant, located at 141 West Terrace Point, began operation on April 5, 1998. A minor upgrade to the plant was completed in 2001 to give the plant a treatment capacity of approximately 11 million litres per day.
The plant was expanded and upgraded in 2008-2009 to increase treatment capacity to approximately 22 million litres per day. Cochrane’s water is now treated using a combination of clarifying and micro-filtering, multi-barrier disinfection using ultraviolet light and chlorine before it is distributed to local consumers.
Are lead pipes used in Cochrane’s water system?
Research suggests that lead pipe was recognized as a cause of lead poisoning in the 1800s and that by the 1920s many towns and cities were prohibiting or restricting their use.
Cochrane’s water distribution system was developed in the 1950s and 60s, when the most common material used was copper. Before that, most existing homes were on private wells; when they were tied in to the Town’s water infrastructure, it was with copper pipes.
This does not mean all homes are free of lead: until 1986, copper pipes were soldered with material containing 50% lead and 50% tin. Solder joints are mainly inside homes; service connections from the water main to your property line are Town-owned, and are compression fit (so, no solder joints). Lead solder may have been used inside your property line and individual homes, and some faucets pre-2010 could contain lead from the manufacturing process.
Over the years, as the Town has inspected and replaced pipes, no lead pipes have been found. The Town’s water quality testing – posted to cochrane.ca/WaterQuality – confirms that lead levels in the Town’s water supply are at 0.00005 mg/L (as of February 2019), well below Health Canada’s maximum acceptable limit of 0.005 mg/L.
If you have concerns or suspect you may have a lead issue in your home, arrange for sampling and testing by a private accredited licensed laboratory.
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