Skip to Content

Bend Parks and Rec tests for lead, finds a few issues


The Bend Park and Recreation District tested samples of water in more than 150 water fixtures in its recreation facilities, parks and other locations owned by the district and released the results Friday — a mostly clean bill of health.

The testing to determine presence of lead and copper in drinking water found a significant majority of the results are under the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s and Oregon Health Authority’s Maximum Concentration Level (MCL) for lead, the district said.

“Given the heightened interest locally and nationally, our Board of Directors asked for testing to occur to ensure safe drinking water in our parks and facilities,” said Executive Director Don Horton.

All samples collected from drinking water fixtures at the Juniper Swim and Fitness Center, Old Bend Gym, former District administration building currently occupied by Cascade School of Music, Harmon Hobby Hut, Larkspur and Pioneer parks had acceptable or non-detectable levels, the agency said.

Seven fixtures tested had levels higher than the OHA threshold; however, all of these fixtures are not primary drinking water sources and are infrequently used.

Three exterior hose bibs at two caretaker houses, an umpire shower at Vince Genna Stadium, a janitor sink at the former District administration building, and a pool deck bib and indoor pool water supply by-pass valve at Juniper Swim and Fitness Center had results slightly higher than the OHA threshold for lead. Test results found that copper levels are well below the MCL in all locations.

“Follow up flush-testing was done to locate the source of lead in these seven fixtures and indicates the lead originates within the fixtures rather than building infrastructure,” said Mark Ellington, the park district’s asset program manager ,who led the testing efforts.

Occupants of affected buildings have been notified of the initial and flush-sample results and have been provided a copy of the lab tests. They have also been instructed not to consume the water from the specific outlet until fixtures are replaced.

As soon as the park district replaces the seven fixtures, staff will conduct follow-up testing to confirm successful corrective measures.

At the July 16 board meeting, park district staff presented an action plan to test for the presence of lead and copper in the drinking water at district buildings and parks.

Samples were collected between July 28 and Aug. 14 and were processed by UMPQUA Research Company, the same resource used by the Bend-La Pine Schools for its recent testing.

Article Topic Follows: News

Jump to comments ↓

KTVZ News Team


KTVZ NewsChannel 21 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content