Topeka officials say high levels of chloride in city’s water not dangerous

TOPEKA — Topeka city officials say high levels of chloride in the city’s water supply pose no danger to residents.

The city announced Thursday that its treatment plant recorded higher than normal levels of chloride in the Kansas River. The chloride is coming from the Smokey Hill River, which feeds into the Kansas River. The source of the chloride hasn’t been determined.

The chloride readings mean the salt levels in the water are high.

City officials say the Environmental Protection Agency has confirmed the water is within its safe drinking water regulations.

There is no maximum contaminant levels for chloride for primary drinking water. A secondary standard maximum of 250 milligrams per liter is only a guideline.

The chloride level in the Kansas River on Thursday was 286 mg/L. The city recorded a reading of 316 mg/L Tuesday.

The city of Lawrence, which also gets water from the Kansas River, issued a news release Thursday echoing the statements of Topeka’s city officials.

“While chloride is not considered to present a risk to human health, anyone on a low sodium diet may wish to consult their physician about personal intake of tap water,” the release said. “The Utilities Department has informed known local businesses which might be affected.”

Residents with questions can contact the Utilities Department at 785-832-7800.


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