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Allentown, PA Water Quality Report

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Sources Of Drinking Water in Allentown, Pennsylvania

Where does Allentown get its water from? Allentown’s drinking water comes from surface water sources such as the Little Lehigh Creek, and groundwater sources such as Schantz Spring. Lehigh County Authority gets its drinking water from Allentown’s water system and 19 wells located throughout the watershed. A watershed is the area of land where all the water that falls on it will eventually drain to the same body of water, either oƒ the surface to a stream, lake, wetland, or river, or through the groundwater. Is Allentown’s water safe to drink?

Source: City of Allentown

Contaminants Found in Allentown’s Water Supply

(Detected above health guidelines)

Bromodichloromethane

Bromodichloromethane, one of the total trihalomethanes (TTHMs), is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Bromodichloromethane and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy.

Bromoform

Bromoform, one of the total trihalomethanes (TTHMs), is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Bromoform and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy.

Chloroform

Chloroform, one of the total trihalomethanes (TTHMs), is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Chloroform and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy.

Chromium (hexavalent)

Chromium (hexavalent) is a carcinogen that commonly contaminates American drinking water. Chromium (hexavalent) in drinking water may be due to industrial pollution or natural occurrences in mineral deposits and groundwater.

Dibromochloromethane

Dibromochloromethane, one of the total trihalomethanes (TTHMs), is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water.

Radiological contaminants 

Radiological contaminants leach into water from certain minerals and from mining. This utility detected Radium, combined (-226 & -228).

Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)

Trihalomethanes are cancer-causing contaminants that form during water treatment with chlorine and other disinfectants. The total trihalomethanes group includes four chemicals: chloroform, bromodichloromethane, dibromochloromethane and bromoform. 

Potential Health Effects of Consuming These Contaminants

Health risks of bromodichloromethane in excess of health guideline

Cancer: The health guideline of 0.4 ppb for bromodichloromethane was defined by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a one-in-a-million lifetime risk of cancer. Values greater than one-in-a-million cancer risk level can result in increased cancer cases above one in a million people.

Health risks of bromoform in excess of health guideline

Cancer: The health guideline of 0.5 ppb for bromoform was proposed in 2018 by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a one-in-a-million lifetime risk of cancer. Values greater than one-in-a-million cancer risk level can result in increased cancer cases above one in a million people.

Health risks of chloroform in excess of health guideline

Cancer: The health guideline of 1 ppb for chloroform was defined by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a one-in-a-million lifetime risk of cancer. Values greater than one-in-a-million cancer risk level can result in increased cancer cases above one in a million people.

Health risks of chromium (hexavalent) in excess of health guideline

Cancer: The health guideline of 0.02 ppb for chromium (hexavalent) was defined by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a public health goal, the level of a drinking water contaminant that does not pose a significant health risk. This health guideline protects against cancer.

Health risks of trihalomethanes in excess of health guideline

Cancer: The health guideline of 0.8 ppb for trihalomethanes was defined by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a draft public health goal, the level of drinking water contaminant that does not pose a significant health risk. This health guideline protects against cancer.

Health risks of radiological contaminants in excess of health guidelines

Birth defects: Drinking water contamination with radioactive substances increases the risk of cancer and may harm fetal development.

Health risks of dibromochloromethane  in excess of health guidelines

Cancer & Birth Defects: Dibromochloromethane and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy.

Contaminant Levels in Allentown, PA Compared to Other Regions

Bromodichloromethane

- Health Guideline: 0.06 ppb

 - State: 3.92 ppb

 - Allentown, PA: 8.60 ppb

 - National: 4.38 ppb

Bromoform

- Health Guideline: 0.5 ppb

 - State: 0.871ppb

 - Allentown, PA: 1.47 ppb

 - National: 1.77 ppb

Chloroform

 - Health Guideline: 1.0 ppb

 - State: 10.4 ppb

 - National: 11.4 ppb

 - Allentown, PA: 11.8 ppb

Chromium (hexavalent)

 - Health Guideline: 0.02 ppb

 - Allentown, PA: 0.673 ppb

 - State: 0.150 ppb

 - National: 0.782 ppb

Dibromochloromethane  

 - Health Guideline: 0.7 ppb

 - State: 2.28 ppb

 - National: 6.00 ppb

 - Allentown, PA: 6.85 ppb

Total Trihalomethanes (TTHMs)

 - Health Guideline: 0.8 ppb

 - State: 17.7 ppb

 - National: 23.4 ppb

 - Allentown, PA: 28.7 ppb

Radiological contaminants  

No information available about this contaminant but it cannot be good. This utility found Radium, combined (-226 & -228), Radium-228 & Uranium in the drining water. Radiological contaminants leach into water from certain minerals and from mining. Drinking water contamination with radioactive substances increases the risk of cancer and may harm fetal development.

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April Jones

A hiker, blogger, and water quality expert...

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