Thunder Bay Changing Lead Strategy, Distributes Water Filters

Thunder Bay Changing Lead Strategy, Distributes Water Filters Photo: WDIO, File

Created: February 10, 2020 04:37 PM

The City of Thunder Bay is changing its strategy for lowering lead levels in homes served by lead service pipes and distributing filtered water pitchers for some residents to use while it evaluates future options.


According to a city newsletter, the city had been adding sodium hydroxide to the water citywide since 2018 to reduce lead levels at the tap. However, the city noted an increase in the number of pinhole leaks and is ending the use of sodium hydroxide.

Now, the city will distribute free water pitchers with six filters to residents whose homes have lead service pipes. The city has a list of customers with lead pipes and is contacting them directly to distribute the kits.

"Water filter kits have now arrived and will be assembled and delivered to customers with lead service pipes over the coming weeks," said Michelle Warywoda, Environment Division Director, in a news release. "These water filters are certified to reduce lead in tap water and should be used for drinking, cooking, and preparing baby formula. It is important to use these filters as lead in drinking water can pose health risks, especially for infants, children under the age of six, and pregnant women."

The city said in response to questions on Facebook that the filters will be provided for one year, and that the city is evaluating other means of future corrosion control.

Residents with questions can contact the city's Infrastructure & Operations Dispatch at 807-625-2195 or visit

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