Newark phasing out free bottled water for residents in wake of filter tests

Posted: Updated:

Newark officials announced that the city will distribute less bottled water to residents after tests showed that city-issued filters are reducing lead levels.

Recreation centers in Newark will stop giving out water next week, though families with pregnant women and children under 6 can still get it. The centers will instead distribute water filters and replacement cartridges.

Those recreation centers are:

  • St. Peter's Recreation Center, 378 Lyons Ave.
  • Boylan Street Recreation Center, 916 South Orange Ave.
  • Vince Lombardi Center of Hope, 201 Bloomfield Ave.

The city says the recreation centers will be back to their regular hours next week and will be closed on Mondays.

FULL COVERAGE: Newark Water Crisis

Residents of about 14,000 homes with lead pipes began receiving bottled water in August after lead levels tested high at a few homes using the filters. More than 100,000 cases of water have been distributed.

Subsequent testing of more than 300 homes showed 97% to 99% of the filters were working.

The city began giving out filters last year after tests showed the chemicals used to prevent lead leaching from pipes into drinking water weren't effective.

The city has also begun removing the lead service lines and replacing them with copper pipes. Residents need to sign up to get the pipes removed. The city will cover the cost of removal.

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.

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