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Northeast Ohio


Classes in Sebring resume despite the village's lead-contaminated waters
The district's drinking water received a passing grade, but water fountains remain shut off
Story by BRIAN BULL


 
Viscounte says two drinking fountains at the high school tested high, but they’ve now been shut off.
Courtesy of Toni Viscounte, LinkedIn
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After three consecutive days of canceled classes, schools in the village of Sebring will resume today, according to a district administrator.

For Ohio Public Radio, WCPN’s Brian Bull reports that the schools’ drinking water reached a passing grade after lead contamination fears emerged last week across the area.

LISTEN: School resumes in Sebring despite issues with lead-contaminated water

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The Ohio EPA took more than 10 dozen water samples from Sebring’s three schools Sunday night, and say only two showed higher than acceptable levels of lead.

Toni Viscounte is Superintendent for Sebring Schools. She says two drinking fountains at the high school tested high, but they’ve now been shut off.

“Parents can send in bottled water if they’re still nervous about the water supply system in Sebring," said Viscounte. "And you know, we have hand sanitizer, they can send in hand sanitizer, but are ready to move forward and get the kids back in school.”

Last week, seven Sebring homes were found with high lead levels. Ohio EPA officials say now there are just three homes with higher than acceptable lead levels in their drinking water.  Those houses are being outfitted with filtration systems.

While the village water treatment system plant has been deemed safe, the Ohio EPA says administrators need to adjust the plant water’s chemical balance because it caused some residents’ pipes to leach lead into the water.

The Sebring plant operator has been removed from his position and is being investigated by the Ohio EPA.

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