Lead Detected From Indoor Utility Sink at Former Submarine Base

26 February 2022
JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii – The Navy detected elevated levels of lead from a non-residential building located on the former Submarine Base Pearl Harbor. The initial sample, taken from an indoor utility sink at the Pier Side Child Development Center located in Zone C1, tested positive for lead at a level of 49 parts per billion
Department of the Navy, Department of the Army, State of Hawaii, Hawaii State Department of Health and United States Environmental Protection Agency logos

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii – The Navy detected elevated levels of lead from a non-residential building located on the former Submarine Base Pearl Harbor.

The initial sample, taken from an indoor utility sink at the Pier Side Child Development Center located in Zone C1, tested positive for lead at a level of 49 parts per billion (ppb). The action level set for lead is 15 ppb. That level is also called an Incident Specific Parameter or ISP.

Lead has been used for a long time in a wide variety of products found in and around homes and buildings. It can enter water lines through corrosion of plumbing materials, especially where the water has high acidity or low mineral content.

This exceedance was the only one reported of the 21 samples collected from Zone C1. The Interagency Drinking Water System Team (IDWST) determined that the next step was to replace the fixture, sample, flush, and re-sample. The CDC Director has been notified of the findings and corrective actions.

The Hawaii Department of Health (DOH) public health advisory remains in effect for Zone C1. With the exception of zones amended by the DOH, Navy Water System users should not use the water for drinking, cooking, or oral hygiene. The IDWST will perform a thorough review of all results, including the re-sampling for Zone C1 before submitting a package for Hawaii DOH review. Once Hawaii DOH determines the water is safe to drink, Hawaii DOH will amend the health advisory for Zone C1.

The Hawaii DOH’s Nov. 29, 2021, public health advisory for JBPHH remains in effect for all zones except Zone A1 (Pearl City Peninsula), Zone A2 (Ford Island), Zone D1 (Hale Moku, Hokulani), and Zone I1 (Red Hill Housing).

For more information on water recovery efforts, please see: https://www.cpf.navy.mil/JBPHH-Water-Updates/

For more information on lead in drinking water, please see: https://www.epa.gov/ground-water-and-drinking-water/basic-information-about-lead-drinking-water.

CORRECTION: In an earlier version of the media release, the affected CDC was not named and the exceedance location was incorrectly identified as an outdoor utility sink. The utility sink is an internal one, located in the laundry room of the CDC. Additionally, remediation efforts were updated to reflect the correct order of which they occurred and additional amended zones were included since original post.

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