In the nine Southern New Jersey counties, 12% of the 25,256 wells exceeded one or more MCLs. Failures for gross alpha particle activity were most common followed by nitrates, VOCs, mercury and fecal coliform/E. coli.
Figure 12: Northern New Jersey - Summary of Private Well Testing Act Results For Primary Drinking Water Standards September 2002 – April 2007 Out of 25,772 wells
In the 12 Northern New Jersey counties, 12% of the 25,772 wells exceeded one or more primary drinking water standards. The most common failure was for arsenic (12%); followed by gross alpha particle activity (in Mercer, Middlesex, and Hunterdon Counties only); fecal coliform/E.coli, nitrates and VOCs.
Lead Testing Results (Variability in Results)
Exposure to lead is a significant health concern, especially for young children and infants whose growing bodies tend to absorb more lead than the average adult, and because of the concern that it may impair a child’s mental development. Drinking water is one possible source of lead exposure. Infants whose diets consist mainly of liquid can get 40 - 60% of their lead exposure from water. Some drinking water pipes, taps, solder and other plumbing components contain lead. Lead-containing plumbing materials are still being sold. Some fixtures may still contain up to 8% lead, which is used as an alloying material in brass. For example, yellow brass contains 1-3% lead and red brass contains 5-6% lead. Depending upon the corrosivity of the well water, the brass plumbing materials can leach lead at varying concentrations into the water and pose a health risk when the water is consumed.
Even though ground water, which is the source of water for private well owners, may have little or no lead, a water sample collected from a home as part of the PWTA